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Stéphane Bianchi to head LVMH watchmaking division

LVMH has tapped Stéphane Bianchi, the former CEO of the cosmetics firm Yves Rocher, to succeed Jean-Claude Biver as head of LVMH’s watch division.

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Biver, who recently turned 69, stepped down from his operational duties as president of the LVMH watch division and CEO of TAG Heuer for health reasons but will nevertheless remain as non-executive chairman of the division.

After spending over 45 years in the industry, Biver said he wishes to focus more specifically on “advising and sharing” his experience.

Bianchi will become CEO of TAG Heuer and oversee the operations of Hublot and Zenith, the other two brands in the watch division, effective 1st of November.

Recently on the board of the Maus Group, a family business, Stéphane spent most of his career with the Yves Rocher Group where he was CEO from 1998 to 2015.

LVMH has also promoted Frédéric Arnault to the position of director of strategy and digital director at TAG Heuer. Arnault, 23, was named TAG’s head of connected technology last year. He is the son of LVMH Chairman and CEO Bernard Arnault.

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“I would like to applaud Jean-Claude Biver for the decisive leadership that he has shown in his role at the head of the watchmaking division,” Bernard Arnault said in a statement. “Since the integration of Hublot within LVMH, he has elevated our watchmaking division to a world class technical level of the highest order and has significantly accelerated its commercial growth. I am delighted that the Group will continue to benefit from Jean-Claude’s advice, and I am sure that his entrepreneurial spirit will bring many innovative new ideas to the world of watchmaking.”