Apple has just made another significant hire from the global fashion industry: Yves Saint Laurent’s Europe President and Retail Head Catherine Monier. Sources say that Monier left the Paris, France-based fashion icon earlier this summer and that she started at Apple within the last few weeks. The sources added that former Yves Saint Laurent CEO Paul Deneve, who joined Apple last year to work on “Special Projects” under Apple CEO Tim Cook, was behind the hire and that Monier will work on Deneve’s team…

Screenshot 2014-08-06 12.02.42

Monier began working at Yves Saint Laurent in 2012, and prior to working under Deneve in France, she worked in various executive retail and wholesale roles at several fashion brands in the Paris area.

Sources say that Deneve’s team at Apple has been working on new strategies for Apple’s official retail stores in order to make the stores more capable of selling and marketing fashion and wearable goods. The timing of Monier’s placement on this team is also no coincidence: Apple is gearing up to launch a fashion and fitness-oriented wearable band this fall, and Apple will need all the expertise in selling fashion goods that it can get its hands on prior to the launch.

The recent appointments of Deneve and Monier come as former Burberry CEO Angela Ahrendts transitions into Apple’s Senior Vice President of Retail and Online Stores position. As a trio of fashion industry executives, along with lesser-known players such as former Burberry Social Media Marketing Head Musa Tariq, Apple has the ability to combine acumen in fashion with its established expertise in sensor-packed gadgets with fitness and health-oriented software.

Apple and a Yves Saint Laurent representative have yet not responded to requests for comment.

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29 Responses to “Paul Deneve brings YSL’s Europe President and Retail chief into the Apple fold”

  1. Sigh, another fashion woman hired into the world of tech. When will the shame ever stop? As if Angela wasn’t enough to make my stocks plummet, now this?!?! :(


    • flaviosuave says:

      It’s as if every woman they hire shrinks your threatened manhood down an inch, and I can understand your concern with only two inches left to go!


    • jakexb says:

      I think its smart. Tech is tech, but it’s also more than that. Phones are personal objects in ways that that are almost as similar to a bag or watch that you carry with you every day as much as they are gadgets. These people understand how to sell personal objects. It helps apple to think outside of “nerd patrol” when it comes to selling these things.


      • randomkhaos says:

        One of the things that has retarded the e-world from becoming more ubiquitous is nerd hauteur. And communication challenged communication devices engineers. Some of these interfaces were designed by a basement dweller kid waiting for mommy to call for dinner. No idea about function, just looks good on the page. Damned if I’ll wear Apple fashion, maybe a T with two bites out of it.


      • Jakexb,
        Perhaps you’re right.
        Although Apple has by itself created a “fashion statement” first with the iPod and then really took off with the iPhone and iPad.
        These days the “average consumer” knows about Apple, which wasn’t the case even 10 years ago.
        I don’t think Apple needs to come into the fashion world, their tech&gear is fashion all by itself.
        But perhaps, as you say, marrying tech with art and now fashion is a potent cocktail.


  2. j0hnf23 says:

    i’m really curious about that fashion-hiring-spree at apple


  3. rogifan says:

    Apple is hiring a lot of people in the fashion industry tied to sales/marketing. Pressure is on Jony & team to deliver the goods.


    • These aren’t designers, they’re retail and logistics people. And I wouldn’t read too much in to their Fashion industry background re: a wearable device. What these people, from Deneve to Arhendts to Monier, really bring is expertise in the retailing of aspirational products.


  4. Reblogged this on Taste of Apple and commented:
    All these hires are a good sign that Apple knows the challenges that lie ahead. They’re taking it seriously and I bet they’ll succeed with so much talent. This is going to be a great year for users around the globe and the future seems to be just as bright.


  5. I like the geek look. Now I will never buy this stuff. I know Steve handed over the reins with freedom to Tim, but sometimes I wish he had a caveat in there: keep the minimalist approach, don’t add Euro-trash. I’m still on board with Cook as an excellent leader and my personal preferences certainly don’t drive a company. Just saying, don’t forget the rest of us – and some of us have been on board the Apple train for a very, very long time and got the kids so engaged they grew up and entered the ecosystem too. I still am fully engaged but this news is a bit disturbing.


    • Pretty certain that your geek wish fulfillment can be catered for by many companies without taste. Samsung, for example.


    • rogifan says:

      What exactly is “euro trash”?


    • where do you think minimalism originally came from? even steve was originally influenced by bauhaus.


    • Euro-trash? You SV yokels need an education about fashion…you know like normal clothes and accessories, the world of fashion is not just shorts, flips flops and washed out polo shirts you wear all year long over there;) And while you have fashion vibe going strong on the East coast, Paris is still the centre of fashion universe.

      I have zero idea what Apple will do with wearables, but unlike you, seeing hires from another industry (one that also could get reinvented to certain extent) I am confident it won’t be a junk product and will have very different application and positioning compared to Android junk


      • SV Yokels are we? – well, yes, we do love casual here. And since the days when the engineering department at Stanford spilled over into downtown Palo Alto, local casual yokels have been making a few items that have changed the world. Casual didn’t begin with Zuckerberg or Jobs, but earlier: Moore, Bill and Dave, etc. (Intel, HP). XEROX Parc, IDEO, etc, etc…yep, the local yokels doing their thing. Homebrew Computer – no, there was never a dress code at those meetings. And there isn’t one at Hacker Dojo today either.

        Have you walked down University Ave in Palo Alto recently? Or gone to Neiman Marcus at the Stanford Shopping Center? You’ll see the integration of what you call “the fashion vibe” – actually NM has never been the home of casual SV yokels (thx for coming up with that term! it’s funny!).

        I do have a lot of ideas what Apple will do with wearables – they met with the FDA, they hired 200 med researchers, so those are some clues. I never mentioned Android items, so there’s really no discussion there about positioning.

        More local yokels..Sergey Brin, Alex Karp, Jerry Yang, — all spillovers from Stanford – actually none of them are too fashion plate types. But if that’s what you want, Marissa Mayer loves Marimekko. So do I, but it isn’t Paris, so it doesn’t count?


  6. chalty669 says:

    It would be nice to see some sort of graph with all of the new hires, their pictures, where they came from and where they went once they got to apple. There’s been so many hires from different industries, it would be nice to just see it all layed out to see the bigger picture.


  7. charismatron says:

    Whatever you do, don’t feed the tr . . . ah, I don’t have to tell you guys!


  8. herb02135go says:

    Cook. The Apple stores will now have mannequins wearing berets with the Apple logo. And the technology will be what Samsung has already put in the hands of consumers.


    • If Samsung is as good as you imply why are they losing money, market share to Apple and some Chinese companies? Could it be the iPhone copying, the cool plastic bodies, or the “cool” features/gimmicks that were quickly killed off? I know that’s what all of my poor, dataless, friends are saying swayed them into the phones they will switch for iPhone 6 ASAP.


      • herb02135go says:

        Nice job of praising your own post Sadie.

        So, when you’re shopping for a device do you really read the financial page before you decide? We all know you just look for the shiny Apple logo.

        Why don’t you inform us about your Samsung experience. Where you actually used one. Oh, you don’t have one? Then stfu. Pathetic.


    • What a brilliant analysis. Thank you so much.


  9. to Silicon Valley Story (@theSVstory): I said nothing against casual clothes, I love them too but list of names ain’t exactly setting a trend in fashion, is it? Apart maybe from SJ fans purchasing NB 991 online years after they’ve been discontinued ;)
    Like I said before as a reaction to your derogative comment about ‘e.t.’, these hires show that they will position (and sell) this new category very very differently from others…. which will also make it stand out and be difficult to copy. We Europeans have our flaws, but selling luxury items is not one of them ;)


  10. randomkhaos says:

    Can computer clothes be far behind? A warning light to tell you when your armpit needs attention? A discreet icon for attention to the unmentionables? A sensor to tell you a soul mate is near? You can clothe your personal robot to go out and live life for you.