Christopher Bailey is leaving his position as CEO and president of Burberry after 17 years with the British fashion house. The designer will go at the end of 2018.
'Burberry has undergone an incredible transformation since 2001 and Christopher has been instrumental to the company's success in that period. While I am sad not to have the opportunity to partner with him for longer, the legacy he leaves and the exceptional talent we have at Burberry give me enormous confidence in our future,' said Burberry chief executive Marco Gobbetti. 'We have a clear vision for the next chapter to accelerate the growth and success of the Burberry brand and I am excited about the opportunity ahead for our teams, our partners and our shareholders.'
'It has been the great privilege of my working life to be at Burberry, working alongside and learning from such an extraordinary group of people over the last 17 years,' said Christopher Bailey. 'I do truly believe, however, that Burberry's best days are still ahead of her and that the company will go from strength to strength with the strategy we have developed and the exceptional talent we have in place led by Marco," he continued. "I am excited to pursue new creative projects but remain fully committed to the future success of this magnificent brand and to ensuring a smooth transition.'
Bailey joined Burberry as design director in May 2001 and was promoted to creative director in 2004, after cutting his teeth working for Donna Karan and Gucci in the 1990s. In 2014, following the departure of CEO Angela Arhents for Apple, he was promoted to the joint positions of CEO and creative director. Earlier this year it was announced that Marco Gobetti would be taking over the role, with Bailey instead becoming president of the brand.
Bailey is often credited with Burberry's pioneering digital vision, which saw it become one of the first brands to trailblaze both live-streaming and see-now buy-now. His ad campaigns are known for featuring up-and-coming British acting talent, including Eddie Redmayne and Emma Watson, while his shows are often soundtracked by the next big thing in music, from Tom Odell to James Bay.