PARIS — Kering said Monday it has appointed Antonio Calce chief executive officer of Sowind Group, the parent of Swiss luxury watch brands Girard-Perregaux and JeanRichard, effective immediately.
 
Calce will report to Albert Bensoussan, ceo of Kering’s luxury watches and jewelry division, who has been shaking up the department since he joined the group last year.
 
Calce succeeds Michele Sofisti. The appointment marks a comeback for the Italian national, who was let go as ceo of Corum in April 2014, just over a year after China Haidian took over the brand. He began his career at Compagnie Financiere Richemont, joining Piaget in 1994 and Panerai in  2001. He moved to Corum in 2005.
 
“His extensive experience in the haute horlogerie and in the luxury watches sector and his deep knowledge of its industrial and commercial stakes, will allow him to fully support the brands’ growth on international markets,”Bensoussan said.
 
In a separate statement, Kering said it had made the first of three payments to Italian manufacturer Safilo Group SpA as compensation for the early termination of the eyewear license for the Gucci brand at the end of 2016, as announced in September.
 
Kering is due to pay Safilo a total of 90 million euros, or $106 million at current exchange, in compensation.

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