Tom Ford International has a new number two.
On Tuesday, the company named Brian Blake president and chief operating officer. The former chief executive officer of distribution and manufacturing for the London-based brand, Blake will report to Tom Ford, cofounder and ceo.
In this new role, Blake will oversee all business activities and operations for Tom Ford International. He will also assume the responsibilities of Tom Mendenhall, who has left his post as executive vice president and chief operating officer to pursue other opportunities.
“I have known and worked with Brian Blake for the past 27 years since we began our working relationship and friendship at Gucci in 1990,” Ford said. “We have grown and developed together over that time and most recently worked closely together at Tom Ford International.
“Brian is a rare creature in our industry as he is highly analytical and practical yet also has tremendous people skills and is a proven leader. He has made many great contributions to Tom Ford International and I look forward to a new chapter in our growth and development with Brian at my side.”
Blake said that since joining the brand, he has “had the privilege of working alongside an outstanding team of talented individuals who have significantly contributed to the growth of our company. I am honored to be part of this exceptional organization and look forward to working closely with Tom Ford as we continue to build our business and reputation as the world’s leading luxury brand.”
Blake is a 40-year veteran of the fashion industry who has also served as president and ceo of Gucci Worldwide, chief operating officer and commercial director worldwide for Prada and Miu Miu, and president and chief operating officer worldwide for Burberry.
Mendenhall’s exit is the latest in a series of moves at the brand in the last two months. In January, Cori Galpern, Ford’s long-time senior vice president of communications, said she was leaving to pursue other opportunities.
Ford also has revealed plans to launch watches with Tom Kartsotis’ Bedrock Manufacturing Co. and men’s underwear under license with Albisetti International. Ford already has successful licensed lines of eyewear with Marcolin and women’s and men’s beauty products with The Estée Lauder Cos. Inc.
Tom Ford International was formed in 2005 by the designer and former Gucci Group president and ceo Domenico De Sole, who serves as chairman of the company. The brand initially launched with men’s wear and added women’s wear in 2010. Its first store was a flagship at 845 Madison Avenue in Manhattan, but the company later this year will move that store to a new two-level, 12,300-square-foot location at 680 Madison.