Swiss luxury goods firm Richemont has hired the former CIO of builders merchants Travis Perkins. JJ van Oosten has joined Richemont as CTO and began his career with the organisation today.
Richemont is better known for its brands including Cartier, Dunhill, Jaeger-LeCoultre, Montblanc and Purdey.
JJ van Oosten will be on the Executive Committee of Richemont in the new role. The Belgian joins Richemont from German supermarket chain REWE where he was Group Chief Digital Officer (CDO) since 2013.
Van Oosten will be the first CTO for Richemont, a role the organisation has created to “meet the demands of today’s environment” said chairman of Richemont Johann Rupert. Adding that the CTO brings experience of scale, transformation, online and multichannel retail to Richemont. Luxury goods firms have recently been realising the opportunity to own and operate direct to consumer business models through online channels, transforming a sector whose heritage is bricks and mortar retail through select high end partners.
Before joining REWE van Oosten spent a year and eight months with Northampton headquartered Travis Perkins as Group CIO. Travis Perkins operates both the wholesale building supply business of the same name, but also specialist wholesale suppliers in electrics and plumbing, the tool hire firm Tool Station and the DIY retailer Wickes. During his career at Travis Perkins van Oosten devised an algorithmic concept for moving Travis Perkins into the digital space. The reason for an algorithmic approach was that each branch of Travis Perkins has unique relationships with local tradesmen according to their profession (builder, plasterer, decorator for example). Travis Perkins was a return to home improvements for van Oosten, he was CIO of Kingfisher, the retailer that owns the B&Q stores, for three years.
Prior to joining Travis Perkins van Oosten was CIO for the non-foods division of Tesco.com the general merchandi
se arm of the major supermarket. Van Oosten was with Tesco during one of its largest periods of online growth.
Van Oosten is one of a number of CIOs who began their business technology careers at fast moving consumer goods (FMCG) giant Unilever.