Topshop gets another exec from luxury sector, Cuthbertson named design chief

Topshop and Topman will be in a very different position this New year’s Day compared to last. After a year in which there’s been a major change of leadership on both the business and creative front, the two chains are also getting a new design director as of January.


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And like its other senior appointments in 2017, the latest one is also something of a surprise. Anthony Cuthbertson has been named global design director at the fast-fashion chains.

The company hasn’t looked to UK retail to provide its new senior exec. Instead Cuthbertson was most recently design director of Just Cavalli. He has experience in Australia too, where he was creative director at Sass & Bide. And he’s also been a creative consultant at both Mulberry and Victoria Beckham.

So, like Topshop and Topman CEO Paul Price (who joined this year from Burberry) his biggest area of experience has been in the luxury sector rather than at high street level.

That’s potentially a risk for a retailer than may show its higher-end lines at London fashion Week but which is still firmly anchored in the high street and is competing in a tough market with chains such as Zara, H&M, Reserved, and River Island, as well as facing the might of Asos and Boohoo online.

Cuthbertson succeeds Jacqui Markham who has been consulting for the brands in recent months.

In charge of the more-than-70-strong design department, he reports into Price and will work closely with creative director David Hägglund, another surprise appointment who succeeded Kate Phelan Gordon Richardson this year. He will also work with buying directors Maddy Evans (Topshop) and Rachel Morgans (Topman).

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