With an eye on the stock market, Italy’s Illycaffe picks new CEO

With an eye on the stock market, Italy’s Illycaffe picks new CEO

Illycaffe has chosen Cristina Scocchia, current boss of cosmetic company Kiko, to become chief executive at the start of next year as the Italian premium coffee maker gears up for a potential stock market listing.

The company controlled by the Illy family said that Scocchia would in January succeed current CEO Massimiliano Pogliani, who five years ago became the first non-family member to take charge of the group.

Under his leadership, Illycaffe completed the sale of a 20% stake to private equity firm Rhone Capital last February, opening up its capital to an external investor for the first time in its 88-year history.

“For the new growth cycle that will start in 2022 and in view of a future listing, we have chosen Cristina Scocchia, a manager recognised for her talent in developing brands with high aesthetic and experiential content,” company Chairman Andrea Illy said.

Scocchia has been on Illycaffe’s board since 2019 and is also a board director for glasses group EssilorLuxottica (ESLX.PA).

Illycaffe, which produces a blend made of nine varieties of arabica beans, was established by Andrea Illy’s grandfather Francesco and was 100%-owned by the family’s Illy Group holding company until February.

Andrea Illy said the coffee maker, based in the northeastern city of Trieste, could consider a bourse listing in the coming years, adding his family did not want to relinquish control even in the event of a stock market debut.