The Damiani Group has tapped Thierry Chaunu as chief executive officer of the Americas.

This story first appeared in the July 13, 2012 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

Chaunu takes the reins as his predecessor, Kari Allen, heads to Versace as president of the brand’s watch and jewelry division for the U.S. and Caribbean.

An industry veteran who began his jewelry career in 1985 at Cartier, Chaunu will assume the responsibility for operations of Damiani in the U.S. market as well as in Canada, Latin America and the Caribbean. Based in New York, he will oversee sales, marketing, retail and wholesale distribution.

“I knew that this was an incredible opportunity to blend the dynamic design and history of the legendary brand and their planned trajectory for growth with my experience in the market,” said Chaunu, who most recently served as president and chief operating officer at Leviev Diamonds and director at Marina B jewelry.

An ex-vice president of marketing at Cartier’s North America division, as well as a former president at Christofle and Chopard, Chaunu is charged with the task of extending Damiani’s reach specifically in the U.S. and Mexico.

“The challenge to take this multigenerational Italian jewelry house, renowned for design with vertically integrated operations and wholly owned factory production, to new heights in the Americas was one I could not pass up,” he said.

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