Thursday, March 11, 2004

Four Successors Named to Replace Tom Ford

PPR (Pinault-Printemps-Redoute) and the Gucci Group officially announced today four successors to Tom Ford. Stefano Pilati, formerly No.2 at YSL, will take the top spot, while three unknown designers have been recruited internally for Gucci: Alessandra Fachinetti for womenwear, John Ray for menswear and Alfreda Giannini for accessories.

If the lackluster announcement produced little surprise, that is because the Wall Street Journal (Europe) was the first to leak the information on Thursday March 3rd. That was followed by the French Daily "Le Figaro", The International Herald Tribune, The New York Times , Agence France Presse, the Associated Press and Women's Wear Daily.

Known for his unassuming and soft-spoken manner, Stefano Pilati, 38, says he is honored to continue the Yves Saint Laurent legacy. "When I first fell in love with fashion, it was obvious that Mr. Saint Laurent was the master, because he brought a couturier¹s sensibility to prét-à-porter while making it completely accessible." Pilati adds, "I will always try to maintain a deep respect for this heritage in my work at Yves Saint Laurent Rive Gauche."

Mark Lee, CEO of YSL, along with Giacomo Santucci, CEO of Gucci and Serge Weinberg, Chairman of the Pinault-Printemps-Redoute Management Board, scheduled a conference call to answer questions from media and financial analysts at 3:30 pm (Continental Europe), 2:30 pm (UK), 9:30 am (EST).

- Timothy Hagy

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