MILAN — Italian luxury retailer LuisaViaRoma has appointed Alessandra Rossi as its new chief executive officer following the closing of the deal with Milan-based private equity fund Style Capital, which acquired a 40 percent stake in the company.
A Yoox Group [now YNAP] veteran with a broad experience in e-commerce, Rossi, who most recently served as chief digital officer at London’s Tomorrow showroom, succeeds Andrea Panconesi, whose grandmother Luisa Jaquin opened a small boutique on Florence’s Via Roma in 1929, planting the first seed of the family company’s success. Panconesi, who following the operation retains a 60 percent stake in the company, remains chairman of the board.
“Andrea Panconesi and I are thrilled to have Alessandra Rossi appointed as CEO to strengthen the structure of the company for a future listing,” said Roberta Benaglia, CEO of Style Capital, which invested a sum of 130 million euros in the company. Over the years, Style Capital built great credibility in the fashion arena through high-level merger and acquisition operations involving a range of prestigious brands, including Golden Goose, MSGM, Forte Forte and Zimmermann.
“I am honored to join LuisaViaRoma, the most relevant Italian luxury and lifestyle e-tailer,” said Rossi, who spent more than 13 years at YNAP, including as managing director and president of Yoox and The Outnet. “But most of all to lead the company toward its international expansion, made possible by Style Capital’s investment. I look forward to working with the whole team to write the next chapter of this wonderful Italian story that began in 1929.”
As Benaglia and Panconesi told WWD in September, LuisaViaRoma will make significant investments in two areas: CRM and the IT platform that is directly operated by the company. In addition, strengthening the e-tailer’s role in the international markets is also in the company’s pipeline.
As part of the internationalization process, the company will rely not only on digital and performance marketing investments, but will also try to boost its brand awareness through physical events across the globe, including a gala dinner with a live performance by Dua Lipa to be held in collaboration with Unicef on Dec. 29 at St. Barth’s Eden Rock five-star resort.