MILAN — British designer Paul Andrew said on Thursday he would leave Italian luxury brand Salvatore Ferragamo in May, a high-profile departure that comes at a time when the group is seeking to recover from the fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“After five years, with pride and a heavy heart, I have decided it’s time for a new challenge,” Mr. Andrew said in a post on Instagram, following months of speculation about his possible departure from the brand, famous for shoes worn by Hollywood stars such as Audrey Hepburn.
Shortly after the post was published, a statement from Ferragamo confirmed Mr. Andrew would step down, adding that from next month the 30-strong in-house design team would be in charge of creating the group’s new collections, starting with September’s fashion shows.
The brand plans to hire a new creative director, but does not want to rush a new appointment given the challenging market conditions, a source close to the company told Reuters.
Ferragamo’s sales have been hit harder by the pandemic harder than many rivals, partly because of its heavy focus on airport spending.
Paul Andrew joined Ferragamo in 2016 to design shoes for its womenswear division, while he was living in New York and running his own shoe brand. He became creative director for the whole group in 2019.
Two sources familiar with the matter said that relations between Andrew and the Ferragamo family, which controls the group, became increasingly strained in recent months. — Reuters