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Apple's new retail chief was Britain's highest paid CEO, saw sales at Burberry triple

post #1 of 78
Thread Starter 
Angela Ahrendts oversaw a renaissance at British fashion house Burberry, tripling revenues with an aggressive digital and emerging market strategy and becoming the highest-paid executive in London, the first woman ever to accomplish the feat.



When Angela Ahrendts took the reins at London-based Burberry in 2006 --?the brand's 150th anniversary -- the company reported yearly revenue of ?740 million and its share price hovered around ?4. Seven years later, when Ahrendts announced plans to step down as CEO to become Senior Vice President of Retail and Online Stores for Apple, Burberry's annual revenue had nearly tripled to ?2 billion and shares traded for more than ?15.

The skyrocketing trajectory of Burberry's financials led the group to make Ahrendts the highest-paid executive in Britain last year with a total pay package of ?17 million, the first woman ever to top the London leaderboard. A Burberry executive told The Guardian in June that the company distributed an anger-soothing email to employees once Ahrendts's windfall became public, but that it was a superfluous step --?"Everyone knows it's an insane amount, but everyone thinks she's totally worth the money," the executive said, adding that "Everyone loves her."

"If I look to any company as a model, it's Apple."
--?Angela Ahrendts to WSJ Magazine in 2010

Burberry's ascent back to the fashion stratosphere was the result of a multi-pronged strategy overseen by Ahrendts and former CEO Rose Marie Bravo which saw the company cancel or buy out many of its foreign licensing and distribution agreements, bringing retail stores back under corporate control. Burberry's function as both a wholesaler and a retailer is somewhat unique among luxury fashion houses and affords the company an Apple-like degree of control over the customer experience.

"I feel like I spent my first few years here buying back the company - not the most pleasant or creative task," Ahrendts said to The Guardian. "But we had to do it. If you can't control everything, you can't control anything, not really."

New Apple retail chief Angela Ahrendts


Ahrendts, who came in at number 53 in the 2013 edition of Forbes's World's Most Powerful Women list, also put in place a new set of technology-focused tactics for the brand. Burberry's flagship Regent Street retail store has been described as "one of the most technologically advanced stores in the UK," and sales staff in many of the company's smaller retail shops around the world carry iPads on which customers can browse Burberry's full collection.

Burberry under Ahrendts employed an aggressive digital strategy with a focus on using social media to build hype for product unveilings.
Burberry also collaborated with Apple in last month's launch of Apple's iPhone 5s, using several of the new handsets to record and live stream the label's Spring and Summer 2014 fashion show during London Fashion Week in September. Burberry's Chief Creative Officer Christopher Bailey, who will replace Ahrendts as CEO, said that the company was "inspired by what this could mean for the future as we continue to explore the merging of physical and digital experiences."

Emerging markets like China --?which Apple CEO Tim Cook has highlighted as a "very important" target for Cupertino --?also played a key role in Burberry's growth under Ahrendts thanks to a strategic focus on the country. China and its 69 first-party retail stores now accounts for 14 percent of the company's yearly revenue.

In a Tuesday morning note to employees, Cook heaped praise on Ahrendts and said that he had long planned to unite the brick-and-mortar and online retail teams under a single banner but, until meeting Ahrendts, had yet to find an executive capable of leading the combined channels.

Team,

I am thrilled to announce that Angela Ahrendts will be joining Apple as a senior vice president and member of our executive team, reporting directly to me. Angela is currently the CEO of Burberry.

She will lead both our retail and online teams. I have wanted one person to lead both of these teams for some time because I believe it will better serve our customers, but I had never met anyone whom I felt confident could lead both until I met Angela. We met for the first time last January, and I knew in that meeting that I wanted her to join Apple. We've gotten to know each other over the past several months and I've left each conversation even more impressed.

She shares our values and our focus on innovation. She places the same strong emphasis as we do on the customer experience. She cares deeply about people and embraces our view that our most important resource and our soul is our people. She believes in enriching the lives of others and she is wicked smart. Angela has shown herself to be an extraordinary leader throughout her career and has a proven track record. She led Burberry through a period of phenomenal growth with a focus on brand, culture, core values and the power of positive energy.

Angela will need to focus over the coming months on transitioning her current role at Burberry and will then join Apple in the spring. I am sure as all of you meet her, you will see why I am so excited that she is joining our executive team. I'd like to add a special thanks to all of our retail leaders. Your strength, talent and leadership afforded me the luxury of taking the time to perform an exhaustive search to find the best person in the world for this role.

Tim

post #2 of 78

I wonder if she's good at keynotes?

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post #3 of 78

Ahrendts is a go-getter and is a fantastic find.  How many successful CEOs are out there, really?  And how many actually leave a successful CEO position to go to a SVP Position?  Really excited about this- love this move.

2012 27" iMac i7, 2010 27" iMac i7, 2011 Mac Mini i5
iPad Air, iPad Mini Retina, (2) iPhone 5S, iPod Touch 5
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2012 27" iMac i7, 2010 27" iMac i7, 2011 Mac Mini i5
iPad Air, iPad Mini Retina, (2) iPhone 5S, iPod Touch 5
Time Capsule 5, (3) AirPort Express 2, (2) Apple TV 3

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post #4 of 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by GadgetCanadaV2 View Post
 

I wonder if she's good at keynotes?

 

Here's a video of her and her work at Burberry:

 

 

 

She seems like a badass.

 

EDIT:  I found this Ted Talk with her.  This answers your question very well.  Seems she likes to hold an iPad Mini during her talks.

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mZNlN31hS78

 

EDIT 2:  This video seems almost like her interview at Apple - except it was from 2012.  She'll be an asset to Apple:

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9AfDJnzydR4


Edited by MessagePad2100 - 10/15/13 at 9:34am
post #5 of 78

The more I read about her, the more I like this appointment.

post #6 of 78
I wonder what Jony Ive's thoughts were on her selection?
post #7 of 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by MessagePad2100 View Post

Here's a video of her and her work at Burberry:


 
She seems like a badass.

I don't know if she wrote her dialogue but she states it all very well. She has a Steve Jobs-like enthusiasm when she's asking questions about how to best evolve the brand. I can see her being groomed as the CEO after Tim Cook retires many years from now.
post #8 of 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by MessagePad2100 View Post
 

Here's a video of her and her work at Burberry:

 

 

 

She seems like a badass.

 

John Browett is such a lame ass compared to her.  Note that the ad is from saleforce but she did a good job in presenting.

 

This seems like a good fit.  I dunno WTF cook was thinking with Browett.

post #9 of 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by MessagePad2100 View Post
 

 

Here's a video of her and her work at Burberry:

 

 

 

She seems like a badass.

 

EDIT:  I found this Ted Talk with her.  This answers your question very well.  Seems she likes to hold an iPad Mini during her talks.

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mZNlN31hS78

 

Assuming there isn't a clash of ego among the Apple leadership, she could be a game-changing addition. 

post #10 of 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by MessagePad2100 View Post
 

 

Here's a video of her and her work at Burberry:

 

 

 

She seems like a badass.

 

EDIT:  I found this Ted Talk with her.  This answers your question very well.  Seems she likes to hold an iPad Mini during her talks.

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mZNlN31hS78

WOW!!! Super impressed! There's no doubt they are going to utilize her speaking talents. Great get Apple!!!

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post #11 of 78

She does seem like an excellent choice, although if she makes  a lot of grammatical mistakes, that might start to bug me in a long keynote. It's a small price to pay, though, if she's as good as she seems she might be.

 

"It gives every associate a platform to talk back to Christoper and I."

post #12 of 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by MessagePad2100 View Post
 

 

Here's a video of her and her work at Burberry:

 

 

 

She seems like a badass.

 

EDIT:  I found this Ted Talk with her.  This answers your question very well.  Seems she likes to hold an iPad Mini during her talks.

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mZNlN31hS78

 

This is an excellent video.  She has a genuine passion for the work she does.  I'm crossing my fingers that Tim Cook hits the ball out of the park with this one.  I'm guessing that Apple must have really sweetened the deal to get a CEO to essentially take a lesser-role position and not hold the reins anymore.  

post #13 of 78
"saw the company cancel or buy out many of its foreign licensing and distribution agreements". Sounds familiar.
post #14 of 78

When I read CEO of Burberry, I rolled my eyes, thinking it was ridiculous and that there was not much overlap in terms of type of products. But I watched the social ad, and some of her TED Talk, and I've come away extreme impressed by her as a person. As long as she develops a deep understand of Apple, it's history, culture, philosophy, vision, and soul, and adapts her work to fit that (not shoehorning what she thinks would work for Burberry), then good things can happen. She also has excellent stage presence and presentation skills, and although I'm not the kind of person that believes there needs to be a "quota" of women/minorities etc, and that the only factor should be who is the absolute best person for the job, would be nice to have a woman presenting at least a portion of Apple's keynotes. I'm assuming she can take over the retail portion of the presentation, which traditionally Cook handles. 

post #15 of 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by Retrogusto View Post
 

She does seem like an excellent choice, although if she makes  a lot of grammatical mistakes, that might start to bug me in a long keynote. It's a small price to pay, though, if she's as good as she seems she might be.

 

"It gives every associate a platform to talk back to Christoper and I."

 

What's wrong with that grammar? (One of) The thing that bugs me with American English though is the propensity to drop the 'ly'. It's proper to say "they speak socially" not "they speak social"!

That video looked entirely like a pitch for the Apple head of retail job.  It pretty much ticked all the boxes for what Apple wants with a healthy smattering of Apple products to boot.

post #16 of 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by s.metcalf View Post

What's wrong with that grammar? (One of) The thing that bugs me with American English though is the propensity to drop the 'ly'. It's proper to say "they speak socially" not "they speak social"!

Language does not work that way. You feeling a word sounds more correct one way does not mean it's incorrect when use in another way.
post #17 of 78

Browett  /  Ahrendts  - night and day.  Ahrendts already seems like a spiritual perfect fit for Apple. I can see her input go well beyond retail. 

post #18 of 78
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post
New Apple retail chief Angela Ahrendts

 

She will succeed at Apple. Period.

Originally Posted by Slurpy

There's just a TINY chance that Apple will also be able to figure out payments. Oh wait, they did already… …and you’re already f*ed.

 

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post #19 of 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by Retrogusto View Post

She does seem like an excellent choice, although if she makes  a lot of grammatical mistakes, that might start to bug me in a long keynote. It's a small price to pay, though, if she's as good as she seems she might be.

"It gives every associate a platform to talk back to Christoper and I."

Apple does practice those keynotes a lot so hopefully they catch things like that. If not I predict a bit of cringing for Retrogusto and I. It's really is a bit much to put up with. My friends and me might even skip the keynote. 1cool.gif
post #20 of 78
Wow, it's truly amazing that you even have to ask!! Proper grammar, whether American or British English, would dictate "... Christopher and me" in this sentence, not Christopher and I.
post #21 of 78

This seems like an EXCELLENT appointment.  In the video posted above she seems confident, passionate and knowledgeable.  Looking forward to exciting things coming to Apple Stores soon.

 

Way to go!

post #22 of 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dabe View Post

Wow, it's truly amazing that you even have to ask!! Proper grammar, whether American or British English, would dictate "... Christopher and me" in this sentence, not Christopher and I.

Who asked?

Edit: ah, I see now. Duh.
Edited by Doctor David - 10/15/13 at 9:57am
post #23 of 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by s.metcalf View Post
 

What's wrong with that grammar?

 

Her sentence was "It gives every associate a platform to talk back to Christoper and I."  It needs to end with "me", as in "talk back to me", not "talk back to I".  But no real person has perfect grammar in their speech.

post #24 of 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by akqies View Post


I don't know if she wrote her dialogue but she states it all very well. She has a Steve Jobs-like enthusiasm when she's asking questions about how to best evolve the brand. I can see her being groomed as the CEO after Tim Cook retires many years from now.

 

Yeah.  She is very forward thinking.  And she's worked with supply chain and design based companies for years.

post #25 of 78
Did listen to some of her speeches on YouTube. Not impressive. I doubt she will be making any presentations at Apple events.

My impression of her presentations is she edited herself out of them. Over analyzed, over edited, they don't flow. In that sense, they are neither passionate nor honest.
post #26 of 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by NormM View Post

Her sentence was "It gives every associate a platform to talk back to Christoper and I."  It needs to end with "me", as in "talk back to me", not "talk back to I".  But no real person has perfect grammar in their speech.

No the correct when talking about yourself and someone else is to use I

http://oxforddictionaries.com/words/i-or-me

J
post #27 of 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post
 

 

She will succeed at Apple. Period.


I agree, and not least because she realises women need and carry handbags.

 

post #28 of 78

Another thumbs up for that video here.

post #29 of 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dabe View Post

Wow, it's truly amazing that you even have to ask!! Proper grammar, whether American or British English, would dictate "... Christopher and me" in this sentence, not Christopher and I.


You are wrong.

 

Queen Elizabeth II, Nov 1972:

 

"I think that everybody really will concede that on this, of all days, I should begin my speech with the words 'My husband and I'".

post #30 of 78

You are wrong.

Queen Elizabeth II, Nov 1972:

"I think that everybody really will concede that on this, of all days, I should begin my speech with the words 'My husband and I'".

Obviously, if one is beginning the speech with "My husband and I," then those words comprise the "subject" of the sentence, not the "object." If they were being used as the object, then it would have been a case of bad grammar. In the sentence at issue, "husband and I" was being used as the object. So, in fact YOU are wrong.

post #31 of 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by cnocbui View Post


You are wrong.

Queen Elizabeth II, Nov 1972:

"I think that everybody really will concede that on this, of all days, I should begin my speech with the words 'My husband and I'".


Obviously, if one is beginning the speech with "My husband and I," then those words comprise the "subject" of the sentence, not the "object." If they were being used as the object, then it would have been a case of bad grammar. In the sentence at issue, "husband and I" was being used as the object. So, in fact YOU are wrong.
post #32 of 78
Originally Posted by cnocbui View Post
 


You are wrong.

 

Queen Elizabeth II, Nov 1972:

 

"I think that everybody really will concede that on this, of all days, I should begin my speech with the words 'My husband and I'".

 

Yup.  When referring to oneself as the subject of a sentence, one should always use "I".

When referring to oneself as the object of a sentence, one should always use "me".

 

Correct: "I went home."

Incorrect: "Me went home."

 

Correct: "Give the book to me."

Incorrect: "Give the book to I."

 

This is true for compound subjects and objects joined by the conjunction "and."

 

Correct: "She and I went home."

Incorrect: "She and me went home."

 

Correct: "Give the book to Jane and me."

Incorrect "Give the book to Jane and I."

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post #33 of 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dabe View Post

Obviously, if one is beginning the speech with "My husband and I," then those words comprise the "subject" of the sentence, not the "object." If they were being used as the object, then it would have been a case of bad grammar. In the sentence at issue, "husband and I" was being used as the object. So, in fact YOU are wrong.

I was taught a simple rule in grade school. Does it sound right when you remove the other person from the sentence. IOW, "My husband and I enjoy tea." and "My husband and me enjoy tea." both sound fine to the ear, but only "I enjoy tea." sounds correct. "Me enjoy tea." just a doesn't work.
post #34 of 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by Retrogusto View Post
 

She does seem like an excellent choice, although if she makes  a lot of grammatical mistakes, that might start to bug me in a long keynote. It's a small price to pay, though, if she's as good as she seems she might be.

 

"It gives every associate a platform to talk back to Christoper and I."

 

post #35 of 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by s.metcalf View Post
 

What's wrong with that grammar? (One of) The thing that bugs me with American English though is the propensity to drop the 'ly'. It's proper to say "they speak socially" not "they speak social"!


She was referring to "social" the technology medium (i.e. "Social Media") like Twitter, Facebook, etc.  and not the social gathering.  I think she said it properly.

post #36 of 78
Personally, I would have hired J.K. Rowling because 1) she's richer and 2) she knows how to sell the magic.

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post #37 of 78

Grammar: In case you haven't seen this, it's funny.

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N4vf8N6GpdM

post #38 of 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jamjam View Post


No the correct when talking about yourself and someone else is to use I

http://oxforddictionaries.com/words/i-or-me

J

Wrong. Read your reference again. The "I" in question was in the OBJECT of the prepositional phrase and should therefore be "me" which is the objective form of the pronoun.

Daniel Swanson

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post #39 of 78
Originally Posted by cnocbui View Post
women need and carry handbags.
 

Come off it.

Originally Posted by Slurpy

There's just a TINY chance that Apple will also be able to figure out payments. Oh wait, they did already… …and you’re already f*ed.

 

Reply

Originally Posted by Slurpy

There's just a TINY chance that Apple will also be able to figure out payments. Oh wait, they did already… …and you’re already f*ed.

 

Reply
post #40 of 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by MessagePad2100 View Post
 

 

She seems like a badass.

 

After watching those videos, I'd have to agree that "badass" is a great adjective for her. What a great fit, both Apple and Burberry are aspirational brands, but with an underlying sense of strong values and purpose. I'm really excited to have her become a part of Apple.

 

To have her come from being the highest paid UK CEO to a Senior VP position at Apple says a lot about her character/priorities, about Apple itself, and about Tim's ability to convey Apple's purpose and ethos. A huge win all around.

 

Lastly, her skills with engaging the social aspect of the brand is probably where Apple could use the most help, perfect.

   

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