While an end of Montale would not be a dramatic loss to pefumery at this point, it will be interesting to see whether further facts emerge from a possible mud slinging contest (apparently Messrs. Montale and Atmeh are doing battle over the trademark, which is why Montale perfumes have been recently appearing under the name "Tanelli" - so now it's an Italian front?). Also one can safely anticipate the appearance of lots of Montale perfumes on ebay and other grey market outlets, so fans will be able to stock up.
I gather that this is a sober lesson on never believing any of the marketing BS perfume houses invest so much energy in - except if you happen to enjoy the illusion - and simply to focus on the scent in front of you. Whether it's a fake M. Montale, a reengineered Count d'Orsay, Creed's phoney perfume history, or even Guerlain's real pre-LVMH history - it says nothing about the nature or quality of the product you are paying big $ for now. A few artisans aside, behind the dreamworld of perfume lie multinational cosmetics and chemical giants and slick business plans, big business and new economy and not all that much craft or art. You can smell the result in every department store.
It's all the more vital that bloggers, since nobody else wants the job, apparently, do what they can to focus on what Andy Tauer christened "perfumism" - the sphere of quality-driven artisan perfumery, while contributing to as much transparency as is possible of the smokes and mirrors business of perfume. Certainly pro fumum, burnt offering to the gods, has always also served the purpose of mystifying truths uncomfortable or not desired to be seen. Smoke gets in your eyes. Ask the Greeks and Italians, whose governments have just been taken over, without democratic legitimiation by the people at large, by so-called technocrats, which is just another name for the consultants and bankers who were responsible for the banking and Euro-crisis in the first place and are now supposed to solve it (hello to Mr. Geithner back in the US). Both Mario Monti of Italy (ex-EU commissar and Goldman Sachs advisor) and Lucas Papademos (former chief of Greece's central bank and VP of the European central bank) are part of the "Frankfurt Group" a coterie of functionaries who installed the dysfunctional EURO system fully aware of the potential consequences and beholden to the interests of big finance rather than ordinary Europeans (English readers check here for more) That's what their policies look like, too. The whole thing stinks. Like a cheap perfume.