The president of leather goods maker Longchamp, Philippe Cassegrain, has died at the age of 83, the group said in a statement on Monday.
He died of Covid-19, said the company where he had spent 60 years.
Philippe Cassegrain was the heir to the Longchamp group, one of the most important French luxury leather goods manufacturers.
In the 1930s and 1940s, Jean Cassegrain and his wife Renée, the parents of Philippe Cassegrain run the family civet (tobacco store) "the Sultan" located on Boulevard Poissonnière in Paris.
Jean Cassegrain has the idea of sheathing tobacco pipes with leather.
This new product is a real success.
These pipes are particularly appreciated by soldiers of the Allied troops and are gradually sold in stores that supply American bases around the world and become luxury items.
The name of the company taken from the Longchamp mill
Gradually Jean Cassegrain also began to manufacture small leather goods for men and gave the name of Longchamp to his company.
For the anecdote, it is the mill of Longchamp not far from the racecourse which gave him the idea of the name of his company because of his own surname.
In 1961, the founder had a new stroke of genius.
He took advantage of the inauguration of the Orly South terminal to set up a luggage store there.
Once again the success was immediate and the brand spread across the world.
When his father died in 1972, Philippe Cassegrain took over the reins of the company.
He launched the first model intended for women.
Inspired by Japanese culture, in 1972 he invented the famous Le Pliage bag made of nylon.
More than 30 million bags will be sold worldwide since this creation.
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For several years, Philippe Cassegrain had left the management of the company 100% independent and unlisted to his children even if he retained the title of chairman.