Designers / Industry

Swarovski Board No Longer Just All In The Family


In what Swarovski is calling a “milestone in [the] company[’s] history,” the crystal company’s board of directors has been reconstituted, so that it now consists of nonmembers of its founding family.

In a statement, the company said that “in the past few months, Swarovski has set the course for a more professional group structure and management.… The newly appointed [board] is intended to act as a link to improve interface management between the owner families and the company.”

Family members and shareholders Robert Buchbauer, Markus Langes-Swarovski, and Mathias Margreiter will continue to serve on the board. Until recently, Buchbauer and Margreiter served as the company’s CEO and chief financial officer, respectively. At the beginning of October, they both stepped down from their posts, according to Austrian newspaper Tiroler Tageszeitung.

Since then, Michele Molon has been serving as CEO and Frederik Westring as chief financial officer, on an interim basis, the newspaper said. It added that the company is likely to appoint a CEO from outside the family, for the first time in its history.

Buchbauer will serve as the board’s vice chair, with Luisa Delgado serving as chair. Delgado currently heads German toy company Schleich and is the former CEO of Safilo Group, an eyewear company.

Other board members are Annalisa Loustau Elia, a former worldwide executive vice president of Cartier and chief marketing officer of Groupe Printemps, a French department store; Markus Fiechter, the former CEO of Jacobs Holding AG and a board member of several retailers; Manuel Martinez, chairman of the board of shoe company Bally; and Robert Singer, the former CFO of Gucci Group and chief operating officer of Abercrombie & Fitch.

The company has long been controlled and run by the descendants of company founder Daniel Swarovski, who ruled via seats on an executive committee. But last year, Buchbauer was appointed sole CEO, after winning a power struggle with other family members. When the family squabbles continued, and the company struggled in the aftermath of COVID-19, Buchbauer stepped down.

(Image courtesy of Swarovksi)

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By: Rob Bates

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