Philippe Schaus has since 2012 “steered the transformation of DFS in terms of stores, product offering and markets to make it one of the most innovative and desirable destinations for the travelling luxury consumer throughout the world”, says Bernard Arnault

INTERNATIONAL. In major breaking news, Philippe Schaus, Chairman and CEO of leading luxury travel retailer DFS Group, will depart in October to become CEO of Moët Hennessy, the Wines & Spirits Division of LVMH.

The Moodie Davitt Report can reveal that Schaus will succeed Christophe Navarre, who leaves Moët Hennessy after a 20-year career within the LVMH Wines & Spirits Division. Navarre will head the Neptune International investment fund, which he founded.

Schaus told The Moodie Davitt Report that until a new CEO is appointed, DFS has secured the services of DFS Board member (and former CEO & Chairman) Ed Brennan on an interim basis.

The experienced and much-respected Brennan will help to ensure a smooth transition to new leadership. The company’s two shareholders, LVMH and DFS Co-Founder and shareholder Robert Miller, will appoint a new CEO in the near future.

Speaking to The Moodie-Davitt Report, Schaus said: “DFS is a unique company in every way. From our early beginnings as a pioneer in travel retail we have demonstrated an ability to embrace change, adapting and even recreating ourselves to meet the changes within our industry.

“At the same time, two themes have remained constant and unchanging in over 55 years of our history: our pursuit of excellence and innovation in all that we do; and our commitment to our brand partners, our customers, and each other. It is these inherent qualities of passion, resilience and loyalty that will steer DFS through the next 55 years.”

Bernard Arnault: “I wish to sincerely thank Christophe Navarre for his outstanding work and contribution to the success of LVMH”

LVMH President Bernard Arnault said: “I wish to sincerely thank Christophe Navarre for his outstanding work and contribution to the success of LVMH. In less than a quarter of a century, though his leadership, Moët Hennessy has become one of the most iconic and profitable groups of its sector.

“The creativity of its exceptional brands has made them a true reference model for the wines and spirits industry. I wish Christophe all the best for a successful future.”

He added: “I welcome the appointment of Philippe Schaus as CEO of Moët Hennessy.  During his 14 years with the Group, Philippe was, among other roles, Executive Vice President of Louis Vuitton, contributing to its global success.

DFS Co-Founder Robert Miller (pictured in Hong Kong) and LVMH will name Schaus’s successor soon

“Since 2012, he has steered the transformation of DFS in terms of stores, product offering and markets to make it one of the most innovative and desirable destinations for the travelling luxury consumer throughout the world. He will be a formidable leader, taking Moët Hennessy to new successes.”

In an official statement Schaus said, “It is an honour for me to take up the reins at Moët Hennessy, and to follow in the footsteps of Christophe Navarre.

In safe hands: Former DFS Chairman & CEO Ed Brennan, still a DFS board member, will oversee the transition period to new leadership for the luxury travel retailer

“I am also enormously proud to have had the opportunity to lead such an outstanding company as DFS for the last six years. We have achieved incredible successes, transforming our stores, elevating our product assortment and services and expanding our presence around the world.

“Although I am sorry to be leaving my valued colleagues, whose passion, dedication and pursuit of excellence have made our airport stores and T Gallerias eminent destinations in their own right, I know that the future success of DFS is assured.

I also wish to thank all our industry partners from the brand, airport, general retail and professional press community for their outstanding support, without which all our developments would not have been possible.”