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Christopher Bailey talks Burberry shake-up

Christopher Bailey talks Burberry shake-up

Christopher Bailey felt that Burberry needed some “real business expertise” so hired Marco Gobbetti.

Gobbetti, who was formerly at Celine, is part of the business shake-up at the British brand. He will take on the role of chief executive, while designer Bailey will now also helm the roles of president and chief creative officer.

Talking about the new appointment, Bailey explains Burberry has become a “truly omnichannel digital and physical retail business” in recent years, which need to be reflected in its staff.

"I just felt that we need some real retail expertise in the company, but I needed to do a more formal business review to really identify exactly how we were going to do that,” he told Business of Fashion. “Simultaneously I had started to look for somebody I could partner with, who really had the gravitas or the experience of a true luxury retailer. And that kind of eventually led me to meeting Marco.”

Gobbetti, who has also worked at Givenchy, and Bailey had instant chemistry when they first met, with the Burberry designer praising Gobbetti’s profound understanding of retail and his global experience. They will now work together to develop the luxury label's strategy and culture.

Bailey has been with the brand since 2001, taking on the CEO role in 2014. While he has a lot on his plate work wise, he’s happy to lead his team through the fashion house’s next stage.

“I think the role of any leader is to take themselves out of the situation and to say what is right for the company going forward,” he explained. “And that is what I have always done, throughout my career, not just at Burberry, and to know and identify what my skills are, where I add the most value and where my strengths are not and where we need to add those strengths.”

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