LONDON — It’s official.Breitling has confirmed that former Richemont executive Georges Kern will join the Swiss watchmaker as chief executive officer and become a shareholder in the company that was purchased by CVC Capital Partners earlier this year.The Breitling statement confirms an earlier report in WWD on Monday.Kern was most recently head of watchmaking, marketing and digital, a new position, at Compagnie Financière Richemont. Prior to that, he was ceo of IWC from 2002 to 2016, where he repositioned the brand. He began his career at Kraft General Foods, and moved into the watch industry in 1992 after joining Tag Heuer.Kern studied political science and business administration in Strasbourg, France and St. Gallen, Switzerland, respectively.Breitling said Kern’s mission will be to foster its global development and to focus on further building the brand's digital and retail footprint, “especially with a view to accelerating growth in the important Asian markets.”Théodore Schneider, who sold a majority stake to CVC and became chairman of Breitling, said Kern’s “extensive experience and knowledge of the luxury watch industry and his creativity will further accelerate Breitling's growth momentum.” Schneider continues to hold a 20 percent stake in the company.Jean-Paul Girardin, the former ceo, will remain with Breitling as vice president.In April, CVC took an 80 percent stake in Breitling via its Fund VI. Breitling was one of Switzerland’s last remaining family-owned, independent watchmakers.“Using our network and expertise, CVC will work to make this global, iconic brand even more renowned and help shape the future of one of Switzerland’s last independent watch manufacturers,” Daniel Pindur, senior managing director at CVC, said after purchasing the company in April.“Specifically, we see significant growth potential for Breitling in both existing and new geographies by driving the digitization of the marketing and distribution channels in the company, helping to enrich the product and customer experience.”Breitling was founded in 1884 and is based in Grenchen, Switzerland. The company employs 900 people and operates two domestic manufacturing facilities.
In honor the @CFDA’s announcement of @iamnaomicampbell receiving the Fashion Icon Award at the 2018 #CFDAAwards, which will take place on June 4, here’s a #tbt of the supermodel on @michaelkors’ runway in 1991. #wwdfashion #wwdarchive (📷: George Chinsee)
“I was making the guacamole when my scout saw me,” says model @stuckinteenage on being discovered just six months ago while working at @chipotlemexicangrill. Since then Williams has signed with @dnamodels, walked in her first show at @calvinklein and landed on the cover of @vogueitalia – a high point of any model’s career. To read @lisajlockwood’s full interview with the model on her experiences thus far, head to WWD.com – link in bio. (📷: George Chinsee)
“I love the idea of dialogue, period. It’s where I’ve always gotten my inspiration from: hearing other women speak, their journeys and their paths,” said @hereisgina, who delivered the keynote speech during @sxsw for @createcultivate in partnership with @fossil. For her two panels, Rodriguez chose female empowering, female-led and female entrepreneurs to focus on. Head to WWD.com to read more about her thoughts on Time’s Up, growing up in a family of women and why we “need a girls’ club.” #wwdeye #sxsw (📷: @jgreenery)
Leading luxury brand are shaking things up to keep up with streetwear. Case in point: the arrival of @mrkimjones as artistic director of @diorhomme. Jones, who succeeds @Kris_Van_Assche, is seen as one of the handful of designers who can actually straddle the luxury and streetwear worlds — which could lead to even more changes at established brands. What could this mean for the rest of the menswear landscape? Head to WWD.com to find out what experts predict #wwdfashion (📷: @franckmura)
“It’s like buying groceries. You’re going to buy the best mango, the best mozzarella, the best things. You have to, or others are going to take it all,” said @gabrielahearst on why she uses only the finest fabrics. Last week, Hearst received her first @cfda nomination for Womenswear Designer of the Year, and earlier this month she opened a permanent showroom in Paris. To read @jessiredale’s interview with the designer and find out why this is shaping up to be a big year for her, head to WWD.com. #wwdfashion (📷: @francoisgoize)
“It’s an interesting thing, playing a younger version of your mother. It’s an interesting concept. I adore my mom and love her in every capacity, but it was just something that had never crossed my mind,” says @anniemstarke on playing a young Joan Castleman in “The Wife.” The same role will be played by her mother Glenn Close. Read more about her growing up in the film industry as the daughter of producer John H. Starke and Close and what she has planned for the future #wwdeye (📷: @nataliamantini)
@asics is launching a new streetwear sneaker inspired by its latest ambassador, @steveaoki. The Hyper-Kenzen x Aoki, which will launch at @footlocker stores exclusively tomorrow, is a slip-on style that incorporates the brand’s proprietary Gel technology through beads integrated into the midsole for comfort and endurance. Read the full story on WWD.com.