Marie-France Pochna is an award-winning expert on style, fashion, and the luxury market. The author of several landmark biographies, she is also a radio commentator, university professor, and frequent guest speaker in both Europe and America.
A luxury industry watcher and authority on the power and influence that drives a multi-billion dollar industry, Marie-France Pochna has written definitive accounts of some of its leading exponents. Her first book, Bonjour Mr. Boussac (1980), dealt with the textile magnate Marcel Boussac, founder of the house of Christian Dior. It won Prix Louis Marin from the Académie Française. The vast empire of this reclusive Frenchman formed the basis of what is now Louis Vuitton-Moet Hennessy, the world’s leading luxury conglomerate. This exploration stirred Ms. Pochna’s interest in the power and influence of fashion. Her other books include the biographies of Nina Ricci (1988), Christian Dior (1994), and Paul Ricard (1996), the founder of the liquor and soft beverages Group, Pernod-Ricard.
The 1996 publication of her Dior book in the United States brought Ms. Pochna international success. She has become a popular guest lecturer on luxury and fashion. In addition, she teaches an MBA course on luxury brands at the leading French business school, ESSEC.
Born and educated in France, Marie earned a law degree from Paris University and joined the international law firm, Coudert Brothers, working both in Paris and New York. Eventually, she gave up the law to follow her husband’s career, which led the family to travel extensively throughout Europe and the Middle East. During that period she made enriching contacts that influenced her decision to become an investigative reporter. During two years spent in Italy she had the privilege, previously denied to others, of being granted personal access to Gianni Agnelli, former playboy and the most influential figure in Italian industry. As a result of her interviews, she wrote the biography, Agnelli, the Irresistible, which became a best seller in both Italy and France. “I write books about my times,” she once said to Vogue magazine.
“What interests me is the interaction between a given background, an enterprise, and the man behind it.”
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