British fashion house, Burberry, has announced major changes in management this week, as a result of an ongoing business review that is looking to revitalise the brand in a time when its sales are in desperate need of it.
In what has been labelled as a ‘major shake-up’ in management, the company’s current chief executive and creative officer Christopher Bailey will be handing his responsibilities over to luxury retail veteran, Marco Gobbetti. Bailey will then assume the role of the company’s chief creative officer and president.
Now what exactly does this mean for Burberry?
It means Bailey and Gobbetti, who will be joining the company officially next year, will be working together to take the label into a new chapter. The move comes after two years under Bailey’s control, in which he received sharp criticism due to a growing stock decline for the company. While Bailey’s ability and talent as the company’s creative director was never in question, many investors are said to have questioned his ability to manage several different aspects of the company and felt he needed help. This is where Gobbetti came into the equation.
It is thought the introduction of Gobbetti, whose resumé includes working at major company’s such as Givenchy and Céline, will usher in a new era for Burberry; one where the state of the company is not constantly in question.
Bailey shared his thoughts on the change in management, and new addition to the company, stating Gobbetti holds the exact experience he himself was lacking when leading the company.
“As soon as I met him, we had a very, very strong chemistry. He has a profound understanding of retail and retail execution. He has also got an incredibly global experience; he is somebody that has done a lot of work in the US, of course in Europe but also in Asia, so he thinks very globally and that is relatively unusual.”
Since the announcement was made, the change has been largely well-received with Burberry’s shares already increasing by 7.9% – the company’s strongest day in the past three years.
If this is anything to go by, it shows us a renewed faith instilled in the 160-year-old British brand, and that the introduction of Gobbetti was exactly what investors wanted. That being said, while Gobbetti does have enough experience in the industry to turn the company around, it doesn’t mean he necessarily will.
The question as to whether Gobbetti and Bailey will work well as a team still needs to be answered, and it won’t be until 2017, when Gobbetti officially begins his role as CEO of the company. Until then, speculation will continue to rise concerning the British luxury brand, and if it can withhold the renewed faith Gobbetti’s appointment has brought and even when he does begin working for the company, he has some pretty high expectations to live up to.