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Pinault takes control of Gucci as results announced

Family-controlled luxury goods company, PPR, announced on 17 February that group head Francois-Henri Pinault will take direct control of the luxury business group, amid an announcement of a rise in the company’s profits.

The Paris-based company said in a statement that the luxury business group, which includes Gucci, Bottega Veneta and YSL, will report directly to Pinault, second-generation head of PPR, and the individual brands will continue to retain autonomy under its respective directors.

Chairman and chief executive Pinault (pictured) said: “While preserving the autonomy of our brands, this new framework will enable them to better leverage the group’s stature to reach their full growth potential. The model we have successfully implemented to develop our activities will gradually evolve into a better-integrated, more powerful group.”

The restructuring, to be effective from 1 March, will see the exit of current chief executive of Gucci Group, Robert Polet who has been overseeing the group’s operations since 2004. Also, chief operating officer of Gucci, Alexis Babeau, will be appointed deputy chief executive of the luxury business group.

The announcement coincided with the group’s results for 2010, which saw company revenues rise by 7.5% in 2010 to €14.6 billion, primarily due to growth of brands Puma and Gucci. Annual net profits rose by 1.4% to €965 million.

The group was founded in 1963 by Pinault’s father Francois Pinault as a conglomerate selling wood and office supplies, and has been transformed into a luxury and sports goods company.

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