Industry News: Frédéric Arnault Is Named CEO Of TAG Heuer
Former CEO Stéphane Bianchi is moving up to head the LVMH Watches and Jewelry Division.
TAG Heuer is a brand that has always appealed to a younger demographic, but today’s announcement of the appointment of 25-year-old Frédéric Arnault as CEO is still surprising news.
Arnault is replacing Stéphane Bianchi, who succeeded Jean-Claude Biver as head of TAG Heuer and LVMH Watchmaking Division (which, in addition to TAG Heuer, includes Hublot and Zenith). Bianchi is now moving on to head the LVMH Watches and Jewelry Division.
When Arnault takes the reigns on July 1st, he will arguably become one of the youngest CEOs of a luxury Maison, besting his older brother Alexandre, who is Co-CEO of the German luggage brand Rimowa. And while he is young, as the son of LVMH CEO and chairman Bernard Arnault, business acumen is in his DNA.
Frédéric Arnault first joined TAG Heuer in 2017, after stints at Facebook and McKinsey, and currently works closely with Bianchi as the brand’s Chief Strategy and Digital Officer. Most notably, he played a big part in piloting the entire design phase of the latest Connected Watch, which launched in March (read HERE).
As CEO of LVMH’s Watches and Jewelry Division from July 1st onwards, Bianchi will also be overseeing the jewelry Maisons Chaumet and FRED.
In other LVMH restructuring news, Jean-Marc Mansvelt, Managing Director of Chaumet, and Charles Leung, Managing Director of FRED, will report to Bianchi in his new role. Jean-Christophe Babin, CEO of Bulgari, will continue to report to Toni Belloni, LVMH Group Managing Director.
“It fills me with pride to see Frédéric succeed me at the helm of TAG Heuer after the key role he has played in its strategic repositioning,” says Bianchi. “He has carved out a place for digital at the heart of the company’s aspirations, restored real momentum to the collections, all the while skillfully managing the development and launch of the hugely successful third Connected watch generation.”
“Frédéric is passionate about watchmaking,” adds Bianchi. “I am convinced that he and his management team are best placed to lead this wonderful Maison to the heights of achievement it deserves.”
Bernard Arnault comments, “Since his arrival at LVMH, Stéphane has given the Watchmaking Division a new lease of life, strengthening the fundamental principles of each of the brands and exploring promising new avenues. I am certain that he will continue this great work and that he will apply all of his talents and his determination to the development of the Maisons Chaumet and FRED.”
As for his son, Bernard Arnault says, “Frédéric’s appointment comes as an affirmation of his achievements at TAG Heuer, where he succeeded in combining innovation, heritage and savoir-faire within this historic brand. These two appointments demonstrate our full confidence in the growth potential of these brands. I wish them both every success going forward.”
(Watchonista photography by Liam O'Donnell, TAG Heuer images provided by brand)