Italian fashion designer Alessandro Michele has resigned from the luxury fashion brand Gucci after spending 20-long years with the brand.
The announcement was made via the French luxury group Kering, which owns Gucci and other brands. The company announced the 49-year-old's exit on November 23, 2022. Michele has held the position of Gucci's creative director since 2015.
In a statement, Kering wrote:
"[Alessandro Michele] has played a fundamental part in making the brand what it is today through his groundbreaking creativity, while staying true to the renowned codes of the House."
Kering is also the parent company of brands like Saint Laurent, Balenciaga, Brioni, Bottega Veneta, Alexander McQueen, DoDo, Boucheron, Qeelin, Kering Eyewear, and Pomellato. However, Gucci garners two-thirds of profits and is the most profitable brand under the french group umbrella.
Alessandro Michele's net worth explored
Born on November 25, 1972, Alessandro Michele is a native of Rome, Italy. According to Market Realist, his current net worth is estimated to be $10 million.
Michele was first hired by Tom Ford and worked under Frida Giannini. In 2015, the CEO of Gucci, Marco Bizzarri, upped his position from head of accessories to creative director, which came as a shock to the fashion industry.
However, Alessandro quickly proved his worth and talent as Gucci saw strong growth in itself as a luxury brand. After his debut show in the fall of 2015, it was established that Alessandro Michele would take a more eclectic and eccentric direction with Gucci.
According to the Business of Fashion, under Michele's leadership from 2015 to 2019, Gucci's revenues almost tripled and profits quadrupled. The quarterly growth rates sometimes approached as much as 50 percent. This year, Gucci will close with an annual revenue of $10.3 billion.
Alessandro Michele's work had a fusion of vintage Gucci signatures and modern-day aesthetics.
His work had a more gender-fluid approach, along with extensive colors, textures, and prints, which attracted a younger generation in China, Europe, and the United States. Loafers with plush linings and horse-bit hardware, as well as cross-body bags with the double G monogram, rapidly went viral.
On Michele's exit from the company, the president and CEO of Gucci, Marco Bizzarri, said that he was "fortunate" to have the opportunity to meet Michele by the end of 2014. He added that since then, they have worked together as the company "charted its successful path" in the last eight years.
Marco commended Michele on his commitment to Gucci and his vision, devotion, and unconditional love for the "unique house during his tenure as Creative Director."
In 2020, Gucci was hit heavily by the coronavirus pandemic and its revenues fell by 22 percent. Since then, competitor fashion brands like Dior, Hermes, and Louis Vuitton have jumped back on track in contrast to Gucci, which has seen slow growth.
In October 2021, it was announced that sales increased by 3.8% in the third quarter, falling short of analyst forecasts.
Some experts chalked the reason for Gucci's downfall to be that of Alessandro's lack of newness in designs combined with the aftereffects of the pandemic.
While talking to the Financial Times, Luca Solca, an analyst at Bernstein, said that the brand has been suffering from "brand fatigue." He stated that the brand faced it as "Alessandro Michele has been doing more of the same for seven years." Solca added that if the company wanted to reaccelerate, it needed to "open a new chapter" instead of moving to the mainstream or becoming timeless.
As of writing, Alessandro Michele's successor has not been announced but he posted a long statement of gratitude on his Instagram.