Industry mourns former Louis Vuitton CEO

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Yves Carcelle, former chairman and CEO of Louis Vuitton and a longtime supporter of the America’s Cup, died Sunday in Paris at the age of 66.

In the buildup to the 34th America’s Cup he visited San Diego for the America’s Cup World Series in 2011 and sailed on one of the AC45 wing-sail catamarans. Afterward, he spoke passionately about the Cup.

“In 1983 Louis Vuitton became involved by organizing the challengers' competition, what we now call the Louis Vuitton Cup, and since then we have always been there, a part of this story,” Carcelle said. “The America’s Cup is very special. It’s the oldest sporting trophy in the world. There is no equivalent.”

Cacelle headed Louis Vuitton from 1990-2012 and is credited with transforming the brand from a staid French maker of handbags and travel trunks into one of the world’s most recognizable luxury brands, according to a report by The New York Times.

“He had this capacity of seeing the big picture while focusing on the smallest details,” Arnault’s son Antoine told The Times. “This perfect mix of left brain/right brain that is what you search for in top managers. His charm and charisma were unparalleled. However, he was a fierce negotiator and you didn’t want to get in his way.”

Carcelle is survived by his wife, Rebecca, and their two sons, and three children from a previous marriage.

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