Burberry hires Saks veteran amid board shake up

Burberry February 2017 Campaign 002

Burberry has appointed Saks Fifth Avenue’s former president and chief merchandising officer Ron Frasch to its board, in an effort to revive US growth.

Frasch, who held his position at Saks between 2004 and 2013, was also previously chief executive of Bergdorf Goodmans as well as working for private equity firm Castanea. He will join Burberry as a non-executive director from September.

Burberry has seen slowing sales in US department stores and earlier this year announced falling profits and sales. Reported profits before tax fell to £395m in the year to March 31 2017, down from £416m in 2016, while revenue hit £2.8bn, down 2% from last year. Retail sales were up 3%, but wholesale dipped by 14%.

This new appointment comes amid a shakeup at the top of the luxury goods company. Earlier this week, Drapers reported that Burberry chairman Sir John Peace announced his intention to leave the company after more than 15 years. Sky chief executive Jeremy Darroch has been appointed as senior independent director with effect from 1 July and will lead the search for Peace’s successor. It is expected that a new chairman will be announced by the end of 2018.

Meanwhile former Celine boss, Marco Gobbetti, is gearing up to take the helm at Burberry next month, while current chief executive and chief creative officer Christopher Bailey will become president and chief creative officer.

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