ENTERTAINMENT
01/03/2018 16:28 SAST | Updated 01/03/2018 16:28 SAST

Burberry's Legendary Designer Replaced

The new appointment comes amid a merry-go-round of designer changes at top brands.

Designer Riccardo Tisci walks the runway during the Givenchy Menswear Fall/Winter show as part of Paris Fashion Week on January 22, 2016 in Paris, France.  (Photo by Dominique Charriau/WireImage)
WireImage
Designer Riccardo Tisci walks the runway during the Givenchy Menswear Fall/Winter show as part of Paris Fashion Week on January 22, 2016 in Paris, France. (Photo by Dominique Charriau/WireImage)

Burberry (BRBY.L) said on Thursday it had picked Givenchy alumnus Riccardo Tisci to take its designs in a new direction, as the British fashion brand looks to revitalise its image and sales with a move to becoming more upmarket.

Tisci replaces Burberry's long-standing star designer Christopher Bailey, who fashioned the trenchcoat maker into a global luxury label over his 17-year tenure.

WireImage
NEW YORK, NY - OCTOBER 27: Nicki Minaj and Riccardo Tisci attend 2016 Fashion Group International Night Of Stars Gala at Cipriani Wall Street on October 27, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Randy Brooke/WireImage)

Tisci's appointment comes amid a merry-go-round of designer changes at top brands, at a time when luxury goods companies are trying to ride an industry upturn as demand from Chinese consumers rebounds and young shoppers drive sales.

Tisci is credited with revitalising Givenchy with a dark, edgy vibe. He was creative director at the LVMH (LVMH.PA)-owned French fashion house from 2005 to 2017, and had overlapped there with Marco Gobbetti, now CEO of Burberry.

"Riccardo's creative vision will reinforce the ambitions we have for Burberry and position the brand firmly in luxury," Gobbetti said of the appointment.

Benoit Tessier / Reuters
A model presents a creation by Italian designer Riccardo Tisci for French fashion house Givenchy as part of his Spring/Summer 2012 women's ready-to-wear fashion collection in Paris October 2, 2011. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier (FRANCE - Tags: FASHION)

Tisci will start his new job on March 12, before presenting his first Burberry collection in September.

"The appointment could trigger excitement and support for the stock," Exane BNP Paribas analyst Luca Solca said in a note.

The label's shares were up 3.8 percent at 9.43am GMT.

Burberry has been struggling to jumpstart sales at a time when many rivals, such as Gucci, owned by France's Kering (PRTP.PA), or LVMH's luxury powerhouse Louis Vuitton, are on a roll.