Italian-run Moncler has found an answer so persuasive that a 45 per cent private equity buy-out last June valued the company at one billion euros. Still relatively immature, it has only 80 or so stores worldwide, compared to the 600-1,000 norm of long-established luxury companies like Louis Vuitton or Gucci. Go into any of these stores, and you will immediately spot the 21st century-perfect product that Moncler has made its own: lavishly constructed, down-filled, waterproof jackets that costs hundreds of pounds sometimes more yet sell like billy-o. Moncler started in 1952 as a maker of tents and sleeping bags based in the French Alps. It began producing Moncler Sale jackets after a mountaineer named Lionel Terray, freshly returned from a trip to Canada, told Moncler's founder Ren¨¦ Ramillion about the ultra-warm, super-light feather-filled jackets worn by locals. Moncler jackets became the in-thing for climbers (one was worn on the first expedition to scale K2) and later, European skiers, too. Yet by 2000, when an Italian named Remo Ruffini was offered a deal to purchase Moncler, its glory days seemed over: although still well-known in Europe,Moncler Coats had been outflanked by a new generation of ski-kit suppliers.Moncler was founded in 1952 in Monestier de Clermont (the company name is a portmanteau), a French mountain town near Grenoble where Ren¨¦ Ramillon, an entrepreneur and climbing enthusiast, began making quilted sleeping bags, tents and jackets to protect wearers from bitter temperatures. Early generations of Moncler Kids might have warmed climbers on the world's tallest peaks and downhill racers at the Olympics and the subsequent boom in winter sports tourism of the 1970s helped catapult the label to cult status among the cliquish ski towns of the Alps but its consumer base remained small and essentially European. The brand was respected, luxurious and static. But Ruffini had a plan. Following lessons learnt observing his father, Gianfranco (whose Seventies Nik Nik rayon shirts were a disco-era must-have, then fell from favour post-Bee-Gees backlash), he began a campaign to use Moncler's utilitarian, mountain-ready credentials to build a fashion-proof luxury brand based on providing something almost everyone needs a never-let-you-down winter Moncler Boots .Then he opened boutiques in some of the world's swankiest ski resorts (Moncler now sponsors most of their official ski schools, too) to win a new generation of winter sports enthusiast.As well as its impressively impervious Japanese nylon, many of its down jackets now come clad in a beguiling mix of treated tweeds or wools and don't like this lovely, snug-as-a-rug "Louis" (pictured, above) look winter-sportsy at all. Others, like the ornately technical capsule collection designed by the young Briton Christopher Raeburn,Moncler Australia look fearsomely mountain-ready. Now Moncler is carefully emerging from the coat-clad chrysalis that provided its entr¨¦e into the luxury business. Its summer kit polos, super-light jackets, boots (with discreet puffs of nylon at their heels), and breezy knitwear and trousers make up an increasing proportion of its revenue. And a cracking new collaboration with the German indestructible luggage-make Rimowa has produced probably the world's most desirable down-lined carry-on case. Moncler's key product remains those jackets, for sure, but this pioneer of informal, 21st-century-appropriate luxury goods is set to broaden its reach far wider.