Style / Fashion

Marco Gobbetti Appointed New Burberry CEO

It seems two years is long enough an experiment with Christopher Bailey’s dual role as CEO and Chief Creative Officer. Bailey stays on as President.

Jul 12, 2016 | By Vimi Haridasan

The term musical chairs has been used so many times to describe the ever-increasing list of appointments in fashion, it is no longer amusing (and this term is now banned on our site with relation to fashion world appointments). Forget the designers, even CEOs are walking in and out of the revolving doors of high fashion faster than our nimble fingers can keep up. The latest to join the list of companies trying to find bottom line answers in the age of digital disruption is Burberry.

Once a digital success story under the guidance of current Chief Executive and Chief Creative Officer, Christopher Bailey, the company is ready for all-new moves to address the current challenges, which are both marketing and retail related. The brand announced its appointment of Marco Gobbetti to replace Bailey in his role as Chief Executive as soon as next year.

The changes in top tier management do not mean that Bailey is out of a job. Instead, he will take on the newly minted role of president of Burberry. In the two years that Bailey has led the company, Burberry shares have retreated, causing many investors to express their discontent. It was clear that the dual role he held in the company, following Angela Ahrendts departure from the company, has caused many to conclude that he had been overstretched while his talent was under-utilized. With a decline in demand for luxury goods worldwide, Bailey even took a 75% pay cut to help ease the drop in sales. We commend Bailey for his singular dedication to the brand and there can be no doubting his commitment.

Marco Gobbetti is currently the chairman and CEO of luxury label Céline and has an impressive resume. Prior to his role at Céline, Gobbetti was the CEO for both Moschino and Givenchy. The surprise housekeeping move saw Burberry’s shares rise 7.9% — a sign that investors welcome the new appointment. This is not the only shift at Burberry though. The brand also announced the appointment of Julie Brown as the new chief operating and financial officer. While Carol Fairweather currently holds this role, she is set to leave Burberry by 2017.

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