Unexpected news, Richemont has announced that Georges Kern will immediately resign as Group Director of Clocks, Marketing and Digital Business.
Richemont issued a brief announcement: ‘The Richemont Group unfortunately announces that Georges Kern will resign immediately. Previously, he was the director of the watch, marketing and digital business of the Richemont Group. After his resignation, Georges Kern will retire from the senior position He will no longer be elected to the Richemont Board of Directors at the forthcoming annual shareholders’ meeting of the Executive Committee and the Group Management Committee. ‘
In response, Richemont Executive Chairman Johann Rupert commented: ‘Georges Kern has been offered the opportunity to become an entrepreneur. His career at IWC is very successful and I wish him all the best.’
The Richemont Group also stated that the watch, marketing and digital business will continue to move forward and report directly to the Senior Executive Committee. Previously, Georges Kern was widely regarded by industry observers as a potential candidate for Richemont CEO.
Last year Richemont announced a major reorganization, including the appointment of Georges Kern as director of watches, marketing and digital operations, removal of the CEO position and establishment of a committee management structure. Georges Kern has only been in his new position for four months. He has worked for Richemont for 17 years, most notably as CEO of IWC.
Bloomberg quoted an analysis by European financial services company Kepler Cheuvreux analyst Jon Cox: ‘The management structure is relatively new and I think Georges Kern is very uncomfortable.’ According to Bloomberg, Georges Kern ‘… bought a stake in rival Breitling , And plans to help the brand restore its independence, the Swiss newspaper Le Temps quoted several unnamed sources. ‘In April this year, Breitling sold a controlling stake to CVC Capital Partners for $ 870 million.