LONDON — Burberry has named Jerome Le Bleis chief supply chain officer, WWD has learned. Le Bleis, who will begin work on Jan. 6, succeeds Roberto Canevari, who is now executive vice president, supply chain Europe, at Unilever.
Le Bleis joins from Lacoste in Paris, where he is executive vice president, group operations, and has previously held senior positions at Carrefour and Nestlé. He has also worked at Michelin and Hewlett-Packard, and started his career at KPMG.
He will lead Burberry’s supply chain team from London, and report to Marco Gobbetti, Burberry’s chief executive officer. Gobbetti said Le Bleis “has excellent experience leading high-performing teams and shares our values, making him a great fit culturally. I am looking forward to working with him as we continue to strengthen the Burberry brand and position the business for growth.”
The appointment comes as Burberry and its luxury peers take an ever-closer look at the way they source and manufacture and how they handle excess stock and packaging.
During the most recent annual general shareholders’ meeting in July, Burberry touted its strides — and future targets — on the sustainability front, pointing to new packaging, which is made partly from recycled coffee cups. The packaging is fully recyclable and certified by the Forest Stewardship Council.
The company is also working to reduce the plastic footprint of its transit packaging, and will introduce new transit hangers made from a bio-based compostable alternative. It is in the process of switching its garment bags to a compostable PHA-blended material.
Last year, the company said it had ceased destroying unsalable finished products. It has also expanded its existing reuse, repair, donation and recycling routes, while developing new partnerships and revaluation solutions. It is also donating clothing to charity.
At the meeting, Burberry also said it is managing inventories better, thanks partly to a new model of tighter and more frequent deliveries.