SOURCE: Luxury Institute

September 05, 2007 11:00 ET

Luxury Institute Survey: High Net-Worth Consumers Rank Christian Louboutin, Manolo Blahnik and Jimmy Choo as the Most Prestigious Women's Shoes

NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwire - September 5, 2007) - High net-worth consumers rated Christian Louboutin the most prestigious women's shoe in the 2007 Luxury Brand Status Index (LBSI) survey from the independent New York-based Luxury Institute (www.LuxuryInstitute.com). Manolo Blahnik and Jimmy Choo were rated second and third, respectively.

Louboutin ranks first for a brand that is worn by people that are admired and respected, making them feel special across the full customer experience and being worthy of a price premium. Additionally, women who would recommend the brand extol its virtues for style. Says one such fan, "This is the gold standard of beautiful, stylish, high-end designer shoes."

"Women's luxury shoes are a hot item these days and this is reflected in the rankings of these three brands that were relatively unknown by the general public just a few years ago. Designer shoe collecting and even obsession has become trendy and is touted in books, blogs and clubs devoted to the subject," said Milton Pedraza, CEO of the Luxury Institute. "While blatantly wearing a brand logo isn't as popular as it once was, women can subtly broadcast their choice of a Christian Louboutin shoe simply by flashing its distinctive red sole."

"As an independent, non-conflicted entity, we go directly to the high net worth consumer and deliver their collective voice for the benefit of all constituencies. Since this is a highly competitive race for their dollars, it is critically important for an impartial entity to deliver unbiased, consumer-based ratings of the top women's shoes," added Pedraza.

Following are the 31 women's shoe brands that were rated (in alphabetical order):

1.      Bottega Veneta
2.      Burberry
3.      Chanel
4.      Chloe
5.      Christian Louboutin
6.      Cole Haan
7.      Dior
8.      Dolce & Gabbana
9.      Fendi
10.     Ferragamo
11.     Giorgio Armani
12.     Gucci
13.     Hermes
14.     Hugo Boss
15.     Jimmy Choo
16.     Louis Vuitton
17.     Manolo Blahnik
18.     Marc Jacobs
19.     Michael Kors
20.     Miu Miu
21.     Prada/Prada Sport
22.     Ralph Lauren
23.     Sergio Rossi
24.     Stella McCartney
25.     Stuart Weitzman
26.     Taryn Rose
27.     Tod's
28.     Valentino
29.     Vera Wang
30.     Versace
31.     Yves Saint Laurent

The proprietary Luxury Brand Status Index (LBSI) survey is the only measure of the prestige of leading brands among wealthy Americans. A national sample of over 715 wealthy American women, with an average income of $291K and average net worth of $2.2 million, was surveyed online. Survey results are weighted to match demographic and net worth profiles of the same audience according to the latest Survey of Consumer Finances from The Federal Reserve.

About the Luxury Institute

The Luxury Institute is the uniquely independent and impartial ratings, reviews and research institution that is the trusted and respected voice of the high net-worth consumer. The Institute provides a portfolio of proprietary publications and research that guides and educates high net-worth individuals and the companies that cater to them on leading edge trends, high net-worth consumer rankings and ratings of luxury brands, and best practices. The Luxury Institute also operates the Luxury Board (www.luxuryboard.com), the world's first global, membership-based online community for luxury goods and services executives, professionals and entrepreneurs. To reach the Luxury Institute, please call 646-792-2669 or go to www.luxuryinstitute.com.

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