Natalie Massenet, a pioneer in the luxury e-tailing space, is said to be leaving Net-a-Porter, the site she launched in 2000.
Bloomberg reported the move this afternoon, citing a person with direct knowledge of the situation. Massenet reportedly resigned after she returned from vacation.
In March, Compagnie Financière Richemont, Net-a-Porter’s parent company, agreed to merge Net-a-Porter with Yoox Group in a deal valuing the former at 950 million pounds, or 1.44 billion euros, or $1.57 billion.
Massenet, who had a major stake in the company, is said to be walking away with $100 million pounds, or $153 million dollars, according to the Bloomberg report.
The executive has been a major force in the luxury market, particularly in London, where she serves as chairman of the British Fashion Council.
Massenet, founder and executive chairman of Net-A-Porter, was to serve as executive chairman of the new company. Federico Marchetti, founder and CEO of Yoox Group — who has been rapidly building his own company — is set to be CEO of the combined entity.
The deal is expected to close this month, so it’s not surprising that Massenet would make her move now.
“Established business models are being increasingly disrupted by the technological giants. It is with this in mind that we believe it is important to increase leadership and size to protect the uniqueness of the luxury industry,” said Johann Rupert, chairman of Richemont, when the deal was announced. “The merger of the two leaders will further enhance an independent, neutral platform for a sophisticated clientele looking for luxury brands.”
Emails to Net-a-Porter were not immediately returned.