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Richemont announces new board members

By Kristopher Fraser

5 Aug 2021

Richemont has nominated Jasmine Whitbread and Patrick Thomas for election to the board of directors. Their appointments are subject to the approval of shareholders at the 2021 annual group meeting on September 8. Both Whitbread and Thomas will serve as non-executive directors and become members of the board’s nominations committee.

Whitbread is an experienced non-executive director with a long-standing interest in ESG issues. She has a leadership and management background spanning marketing, technology, finance, media, telecommunications, and not-for-profit organizations. A British and Swiss national, Whitbread is currently non-executive chair of Travis Perkins PLC, a non-executive director of Standard Chartered PLC and WPP PLC, a visiting fellow at Oxford University, and an advisor to Richemont’s Governance and Sustainability Committee. She has previously served as CEO of Save the Children International and London First. Whitbread also served as a non-executive Director on BT Group PLC where she was a member of the Audit and Risk Committee, and chaired the Digital Impact & Sustainability Committee.

Thomas, a French national, brings more than 30 years of experience in the luxury goods industry. He was the first and only non-family manager of Hermès, where he served as CEO and led the group’s considerable development from 2003 until 2014, after eight years as COO from 1989 to 1997. Thomas equally held senior positions at Lancaster Group and Pernod Ricard. He is currently the chairman of the Supervisory Board of Champagne Laurent Perrier, the chairman of the Supervisory Board of Ardian, the lead independent director of Teleperformance, a non-executive director of MycoWorks and a non-executive director of Shang Xia Trading.

Richemont also announces that non-executive director Gary Saage will not seek re-election to the board of directors in September. Saage was appointed to the board in 2010 when he became group chief finance officer of Richemont. Since 2017, Saage has served as a non-executive director and a member of the nominations committee. In addition, he is the chairman of Richemont North America and a director of Peter Millar LLC, positions that he will retain following the 2021 annual group meeting.

In addition, non-executive directors Jan Rupert and Ruggero Magnoni have indicated that they will not seek re-election at the 2022 AGM, allowing time for an orderly handover with their successors on the Strategic Security, Nominations and Audit Committees of the board.

In a statement, Johann Rupert, chairman of Richemont, said, “I would like to warmly thank Gary for his considerable contributions to the group including the Board and the commitment and collegiality he has displayed over the years. His institutional knowledge and understanding of the issues faced by the Group have contributed enormously to Richemont’s continued success.”

He added that, “I am delighted to welcome Jasmine and Patrick to the board. Both bring unrivalled experience and expertise in areas of great importance to the group. I am certain that Jasmine’s focus on ESG and Patrick’s successful career in soft luxury will be invaluable as we embark on the next stage of our development.”