Puma (puma.com) has announced the appointment of Hussein Chalayan as creative director. The avant-garde Cypriot, a renowned fashion designer, artist and film-maker, will take up the position with immediate effect and is henceforth responsible for designing, creating and developing the sport fashion collections of the brand. In turn PUMA has also acquired a majority stake in Chalayan’s London-based company and eponymous label (husseinchalayan.com).

The tactical move, which was announced yesterday at a special press conference at Salon des Miroirs, Paris - during Paris Fashion Week - signals the sportslifestyle company’s commitment to high-design and ups its status as a fashion-led brand.

“Hussein Chalayan is a proven visionary in the fashion, design and art industries. As our creative director for our Sport Fashion business, Chalayan will bring his use of new technology, forward-thinking design and provocative point of view to PUMA,” said Jochen Zeitz, chairman and CEO of PUMA. “Acquiring majority shares of the Hussein Chalayan brand is giving PUMA the ability to move into a new space, expanding our reach to become the most desirable Sportlifestyle company in the world.”

“I feel that the collaboration with PUMA both for the PUMA Sport Fashion and Lifestyle lines as the creative director and on the existing Chalayan brand is a revolutionary model for a partnership,” said Hussein Chalayan. “Combining PUMA’s infrastructure and technological platform with PPR facilities, we will be able to turn experimental ideas into reality both for the PUMA and the Chalayan lines. Hopefully, people will have the means to access real products evolving from our processes rather than only seeing them in shows and events.”

photo © chris moore