LVMH (LVMH.PA) Chairman and CEO Bernard Arnault has reshuffled top management at his luxury goods empire, tightening his family’s grip with the appointment of his daughter Delphine to lead Christian Dior, and naming a new boss for Louis Vuitton.
Pietro Beccari, who has been the head of Dior since 2018, is moving to replace long-time Louis Vuitton CEO Michael Burke, 65.
“Both are well respected; logical promotions within the group,” said Credit Suisse analyst Natasha Brilliant.
Shares in LVMH, Europe’s most valuable company at about 380 billion euros ($408 billion), rose as much as 2% to hit new highs. Shares in luxury companies have been boosted recently by the easing of COVID-19 restrictions in China, a key market.
Delphine Arnault, 47, has worked at Louis Vuitton for the past decade alongside Burke and previously spent a dozen years at Dior.
Burke, who is Bernard Arnault’s longest-serving lieutenant and has also been chairman of jewellery arm Tiffany, will continue to work alongside the Arnault senior, the company said in a statement, without detailing his new role.
One of the fashion industry’s most influential executives, Burke oversaw soaring growth at Louis Vuitton, the world’s largest luxury label, playing a key role for example in elevating street styles to the realm of luxury in recent years.
Beccari, meanwhile, who also previously led LVMH-owned label Fendi, increased sales at Christian Dior three-fold to 6.6 billion euros during his tenure, according to estimates from Citi. LVMH does not provide a breakdown of annual sales of its brands.
“Succession planning in strategic roles has been instrumental to the success of LVMH’s key brands over the past 20 years, hence today’s moves are significant,” said Thomas Chauvet, analyst with Citi.
The announced changes, which come into effect in February, follow the recent appointment of Antoine Arnault, Bernard Arnault’s eldest son, to head the family holding company, replacing veteran executive Sidney Toledano.
The tightening of the family’s hold on its empire also comes amid a wave of high-profile successions in other fashion companies in Europe.
Bernard Arnault, 73, has shown no signs he plans to step down soon and the company last year raised the maximum age of its CEO to 80 from 75.
Delphine and Antoine, 45, are children from their father’s first marriage.
Alexandre Arnault, 30, is an executive at Tiffany, while Frederic Arnault, 28, is CEO of another group brand, TAG Heuer. The youngest child, Jean Arnault, 24, heads marketing and product development for Louis Vuitton’s watches division.
As part of the management changes, the company is also folding Tiffany into the watches and jewellery division, under management of Stephane Bianchi.
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