Agnelli’s Exor Appoints Hermès CEO as Board Member, Separates CEO and Chairman Roles

Exor, the holding company of Italy’s Agnelli family, said on Tuesday it has appointed Axel Dumas, chief executive of French fashion house Hermès, as a non-executive board member, its latest move in the luxury sector.

Separately, Exor also said it had appointed board member Ajay Banga as its chairman with immediate effect, as it moved to separate the roles of chairman and CEO, which have both been covered by John Elkann, scion of the Agnelli family.

Dumas, who has been chief executive of the French luxury group since 2013, has been appointed for a term of one year, Exor said in a statement following its shareholders meeting.

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His appointment can be renewed.

Exor, which in 2020 bought a majority stake in Chinese luxury group Shang Xia from Hermès, has been growing its exposure to the industry, including through its purchase of a 24 percent stake in shoemaker Christian Louboutin last year.

“Axel is the sixth-generation leader of a family-owned company that is the very epitome of excellence and tradition, and is also renowned for its success in seeking renewal and change,” Exor CEO Elkann said in a statement.

Following the agreed sale of reinsurer PartnerRe, Exor will soon have 9 billion euros ($9.6 billion) available for investments, including in luxury.

Exor is the single largest shareholder in carmaker Stellantis and has controlling stakes in companies including luxury sports car maker Ferrari and Serie A soccer team Juventus.

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According to sources, Exor had also explored a possible tie up with Italian fashion group Giorgio Armani, but the company has repeatedly denied it.

Exor’s decision to split the roles of chairman and CEO will “align Exor’s governance model with that of our companies, allowing me to concentrate on our next phase of development,” Elkann said.

New chairman Banga, a former CEO at global data and payments company Mastercard, has been a member of Exor’s board since May last year.

Reporting by Giulio Piovaccari; editing by Agnieszka Flak and Susan Fenton

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