The fashion world was all abuzz this morning with the news that high-end fashion house Yves Saint Laurent was losing its CEO Paul Deneve. At that time, the announcement was that the San Francisco Bay Area-based Deneve was leaving to “join the high-tech industry.”
Now it’s clear that he’s not just joining any high-tech company — he’s joining one of the biggest ones. Apple has hired Paul Deneve in an executive role, Bloomberg was the first to confirm this afternoon. Details are scarce at the moment, but the word is that Deneve will report directly to Apple CEO Tim Cook as a vice president working on “special projects.”
The rumors of Deneve joining Apple started to pick up steam earlier today, due to an anonymously-sourced report from Apple Insider.
The leap from Parisian fashion to Silicon Valley tech might seem like a big one, but looking at Deneve’s résumé it doesn’t seem so out of the blue. Though the past decade of his career has been in the upper echelons of the fashion world in senior roles at Nina Ricci, Lanvin, and YSL, Deneve’s LinkedIn profile also indicates that he worked in sales and marketing at Apple Europe from 1990 to 1997. He also holds a Master’s degree from tech entrepreneur hotbed Stanford University, and is said to work as a part-time advisor to several Silicon Valley startups.
And of course, if any gadget company is known for its design principles, it’s Apple. It will be interesting to see what Deneve works on in the months ahead.
We’ve reached out to Apple for details and will update this when more details come in.