Diane Von Furstenberg names ‘heir’ to empire

31st Annual TGI Night Of Stars

Diane Von Furstenberg has named Paolo Riva as CEO of her eponymous label.

The 68-year-old designer described the new addition as her “heir” and hopes he will helm the fashion house through the “next decades”.

She told WWD: “This is a most important decision for me. This is an heir, somebody to take it on for the next decades.

“I want somebody who really loves product. We don’t sell numbers. We sell dresses, we sell shoes, we sell accessories, bags. Numbers are extremely important, but I have a very special relationship with the consumer over the decades, and I’ve dressed generations of women, I’m talking to the Millennials. It’s a love brand, it’s very unique and people have to understand that.

“He completely seduced me in the way he sees me, the way he sees the brand, the way he sees the potential, and the way he sees the world in disruption.”

Diane has spent over two years searching for the perfect candidate who fulfils her strict criteria.

And Paolo – who was vice president of apparel and visual merchandising at Tory Burch – can’t wait to “unlock the brand potential” and lead the DVF team.

He said: “What is special about Diane is that she connects emotionally with women of all generations, all around the world. My vision is to unlock the brand potential by offering the relevant mix of products with a unique experience for the consumer. Only a well-orchestrated team can achieve that, and I look forward to leading that team.

“In order to unlock the potential of the brand, we need to give the woman a reason to enter the DVF world and to give them a reason to buy. We need to offer a valuable and compelling merchandised collection so the customer can embrace every aspect of it, across ready-to-wear, accessories and shoes.

“You need to bring the customer to the centre of everything you do.”

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