The people-train continued along the track this year, as some of the industry’s biggest names chose to shake things up and head for pastures new. Drapers looks back at some of the year’s biggest moves.
Christopher Bailey: In one of the year’s biggest exits, the Burberry president and chief creative officer announced his plans to leav e luxury British fashion house Burberry after 16 years at the helm. He joined Burberry as design director in 2001, accepting the role of CEO and chief creative officer in May 2014. In July 2016, Céline chairman Marco Gobbetti was appointed as Burberry CEO, and Bailey moved to the role of president and chief creative officer. Bailey’s next move has yet to be revealed, but Céline creative director Phoebe Philo is one of the designers tipped to fill his shoes at Burberry.
Mary Homer: After 30 years at Topshop, managing director Mary Homer left to join the White Company in March this year, where she replaced Will Kernan. Homer spent a decade in the top job at Topshop after joining as a merchandiser and rocketing up the ranks.
Jo Jenkins: Former Marks & Spencer director of clothing and beauty Jo Jenkins was appointed the new CEO of lifestyle label White Stuff in October. Jenkins joined M&S as a range selector in 1987, before moving to Next after 10 years to become its womenswear product director. She returned to M&S in 2013 as director of lingerie and beauty, before taking up her most recent role with the company in 2015.
Luca Marini: The co-founder and CEO of womenswear etailer Finery left the business at the end of November. Finery was launched in February 2015 by Marini and his business partners Nickyl Raithatha and Caren Downie. Marini told Drapers: “Building Finery from scratch into an incredible player on the British high street has been an extremely rewarding adventure. I leave the business in an excellent position after four years, and I’m confident that [new Finery CEO] John Hind will continue leading the brand to new heights.” Downie also stepped down from her role as brand director of Finery in February.
Gareth Jones: Former Shop Direct chief executive Gareth Jones was named CEO of online at Missguided in September. He left Shop Direct in December 2016 to go travelling with his family, and started at Missguided’s Manchester headquarters in September. Missguided founder Nitin Passi became group CEO.
Jonathan Wall: Close on Jones’ heels was fellow Shop Direct alumnus Jonathan Wall, who also joined Missguided in October. Wall, who was named Best Digital Leader at the Drapers Digital Awards 2016, joined Shop Direct in 2010 and held the position of group ecommerce director. He is now chief digital officer at Missguided, where he is responsible for digital marketing and digital development.