Christopher Bailey: Burberry creative director and former CEO to leave next year

Christopher Bailey: Burberry creative director and former CEO to leave next year”

Burberry said in a statement Mr Bailey had been a driving force behind its transformation, taking it from a "small licensed outerwear business to become one of the world's largest and most admired global luxury brands".

Christopher Bailey, the man who changed Burberry from an ageing British brand into an elite fashion company, is leaving the company.

Mr Bailey will go at the end of 2018.

Shares in the business, renowned for its trenchcoats and distinctive check patterns, fell more than 2% initially, although they were later down just 0.3%. He is surrendering various share awards given as part of the company's incentive plans, which are worth £16m at current prices.

Mr Bailey will then provide "full support" to the team, including chief executive officer Marco Gobbetti, during a transition period until the end of December next year. There were also protests against his pay packet, which rose from £1.9m to £3.5m previous year, while he also received £10.5m in shares in July.

Since the announcement that Bailey would step back to his creative role and the role of president while Marco Gobbetti took over as chief executive, shares have rallied to over 1,925p.

Announcing his departure, Mr Bailey told Vogue magazine it had been a great privilege to work with "such an extraordinary group of people".

In addition to expanding the brand's appeal and output, Bailey - who was born in in Yorkshire to a carpenter and a window dresser for Marks and Spencer - has been widely credited with keeping Burberry on the front foot during the digital revolution that has taken swept through fashion during his time at the top.

Gobbetti said the search for a successor to Bailey was underway and that he respected his decision to move on.

Gobbetti said: "While I am sad not to have the opportunity to partner with Christopher for longer, the legacy he leaves and the exceptional talent we have at Burberry give me enormous confidence in our future".

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