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Angela Ahrendts, former CEO of British luxury fashion house Burberry, is moving on to Apple as Senior Vice President of Retail and Online Stores. Christopher Bailey, currently Burberry’s chief creative officer, will expand his role in the company, taking on Ahrendts' title in addition to his own.
Apple is gaining a great asset in hiring Ahrendts. During her seven years at Burberry, Ahrendts successfully expanded and strengthened the brand, cracking down on illegal counterfeits of the signature Burberry check pattern and reaching out to further global markets.
Apple CEO Tim Cook said that he is excited to welcome her onto the team. He added in a statement, "She shares our values and our focus on innovation, and she places the same strong emphasis as we do on the customer experience. She has shown herself to be an extraordinary leader throughout her career and has a proven track record."
Image : Twitpic
Ahrendts, who has worked with major companies including Donna Karan International and Liz Claiborne Inc., is ready to step out of her fashion comfort zone.
“I am profoundly honored to join Apple in this newly created position next year, and very much look forward to working with the global teams to further enrich the consumer experience on and offline,” said Ahrendts. “I have always admired the innovation and impact Apple products and services have on people’s lives and hope in some small way I can help contribute to the company’s continued success and leadership in changing the world.”
How will Burberry fare without their prized CEO? Burberry chairman Sir John Peace made this statement to UK's Daily Mail, "I want to thank Angela personally for building a great culture and leading the company through the incredible transformation over the last eight years."
Peace expressed confidence in Ahrendts' successor, noting "I have no doubt that Christopher's vision and leadership, with the excellent management team in place, will keep Burberry on the forefront creatively, digitally and financially, creating further value for shareholders in the next exciting stage of our evolution."
Ahrendts added that she is confident that, "with Sir John’s continued guidance and the executive team’s support, Christopher, as one of this generation’s greatest visionaries, will continue to lead Burberry to new heights. Today, Burberry is not only a great brand, but a truly great company."
Apple must be investing big bucks in Ahrendts, considering she made $27 million working with Burberry last year, according to Business Insider. If her performance with Apple is anything like her supercharging Burberry, Apple will definitely see a great return. Ahrendts will begin working with Apple in Spring 2014.
image: Wikimedia Commons