Valentino names Isabelle Harvie-Watt Chief Marketing Officer
A highly experienced, Harvie-Watts will oversee all marketing and communications for the house, reporting directly to CEO Stefano Sassi. The appointment takes effect on April 16. The move comes in the wake of the departure of communications director Francesca Leoni for Michael Kors; though Harvie-Watts has a new position, uniting marketing, press and communications under one hat.
“Isabelle has exceptional experience in our industry and I am confident that her deep understanding of the rapidly evolving landscape for luxury brands will be invaluable for our growth strategy moving forwards,” said Sassi.
The Rome-based couture house is owned by Mayhoola Investments, a wing of the Qatari royal family that also controls Balmain and Pal Zileri. Since it’s acquisition in 2012, Valentino has almost quadrupled sales, breaking through the 1 billion euro ceiling in 2016 – powered by the critical and commercial success and élan of its highly talented creative director Pierpaolo Piccioli.
“I am really excited to be joining Valentino at this time and to have the opportunity to help further build on its incredible heritage and the dynamic growth and momentum of the last few years. Stefano Sassi’s leadership and Pierpaolo Piccioli’s creative vision have pushed Valentino to the forefront of fashion and it will be a privilege to work with them,” said Harvie-Watt.
London-born Harvie-Watts has made Milan her home for the past three decades. Married to Italian Carlo Clavarino with whom she has three children, Harvie-Watts speaks fluent Italian and French. She joins Valentino from Spring Studios, where she was a managing partner.
Noted for her elegance of dress and manner, Harvie-Watts was for many years Giorgio Armani’s key point person for the press, media and celebrities, and has remained a highly visible presence on the Italian fashion scene.
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