Kering introduces new role of Chief Client and Digital Officer

Kering has added to its senior management team, introducing the newly created post of Chief Client and Digital Officer. To take charge of this crucial function, the French luxury group has picked Grégory Boutté, who made his name as Director of eBay France between 2000 and 2007. Boutté, 45, is an eclectic manager with significant international experience, and will drive the group's digital transformation as part of Kering's executive committee.


Gregory Boutte will take the helm of Kering's e-commerce efforts as chief client and digital officer, a newly created position. - Kering photo Jean-Luc Perreard


He has been based in California since 2010, and his mission will be to "lead the group's digital transformation and spearhead the expansion of the e-commerce, CRM and database management functions," wrote Kering in a press release. Boutté will report to Group Managing Director Jean-François Palus.

Grégory Boutté is a graduate of Paris' École Supérieure de Commerce business school and, before turning to new technologies, he started his career in fast-moving consumer goods, in the marketing department at Procter & Gamble France.

In 2000 he took a different route, and joined French online auction start-up iBazar, which a year later was bought by eBay. The latter was one of the first e-commerce operators in France, and Boutté led its French subsidiary until 2007.  He was then promoted to the post of Vice-President Europe, and in 2010 he moved to San José, California, to join eBay's Motors and Electronics divisions.
 
In 2013, Grégory Boutté left eBay and moved to San Francisco to join Sidecar, the first online company to offer ride-sharing and business-to-business delivery services, which was bought by General Motors in 2016. In 2015, still in San Francisco, Boutté worked for online educational courses start-up Udemy, and has now been appointed Chief Client and Digital Officer for Kering.

Online sales have become the luxury goods industry’s most important engine of growth, with some of Kering’s brands already enjoying a big boost to sales from the internet.

Online sales of luxury goods are set to grow 24 percent in 2017 and make up close to 10 percent of the market, according to consultancy Bain. It forecasts they will represent 25 percent of all luxury sales by 2025.

In a similar move, Kering’s rival LVMH hired former Apple music executive Ian Rogers to craft a digital strategy last year.

With additional reporting by Reuters

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