In an unexpected turn, news comes in this morning that Christopher Bailey, President and Chief Creative Officer of Burberry is set to leave the role in March next year.
Bailey began his stint at the British luxury brand in 2001, becoming Chief Creative Officer in 2009 and going on to become both the creative lead and Chief Executive in 2014, before being moved into his current role in July this year after the appointment of former Céline chief executive Marco Gobbetti. Bailey has been lauded by the industry for his transformation of Burberry, a brand that had been struggling to move away from its association with football hooligans into an internationally beloved British hallmark brand contending with luxury rivals from Chanel to Prada. Bailey oversaw pioneering decisions such as live streaming shows, the first brand to do so, and the trend towards ‘see now, buy now’ that has changed the fashion landscape.
Although he gave no reason for his departure, Bailey commented that, “It has been the great privilege of my working life to be at Burberry…Burberry encapsulates so much of what is great about Britain…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’s last collection for Burberry will be Spring 2018 in February, but we have no news of his replacement as the brand’s creative lead at this point. Stay tuned.