Giorgio Armani, 74, is the President and Chief Executive Officer of the Armani Group and sole share holder of Giorgio Armani S.p.A., one of the world’s leading fashion and lifestyle design houses, with 5,000 direct employees, 13 factories, and a direct network of 500 exclusive retail stores in 46 countries worldwide. Under Mr. Armani’s direction, Giorgio Armani S.p.A. today stands as one of the few remaining independent, privately-owned companies in its sector, with a proven business strategy that has capitalised on the worldwide power and potential of the Armani brand name.
During his career Mr. Armani has received many local and international awards. These include the Commendatore dell’Ordine al Merito della Repubblica, and Grand’Ufficiale dell’Ordine al Merito della Repubblica (Italy’s highest government awards), and the Award for Best International Designer, Lifetime Achievement Award for men’s wear and for art and fashion from the Council of Fashion Designers of America. He has, in addition, been recognised with an Honorary Doctorate from London’s Royal College of Art, and has an Honorary Degree from Milan’s Accademia di Brera. In 2006 he was awarded an Honorary Degree from London’s Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design, and in 2007 he received an Honorary Degree in Industrial Design from the Politecnico University of Milan.
Mr. Armani has served as Goodwill Ambassador for the United Nations High Commission for Refugees. In 2003 he was honoured with the inaugural Rodeo Drive “Walk of Style” Award for his pioneering role in bringing the worlds of fashion and cinema together. In 2006, Giorgio Armani was honoured with other important awards: from the Dino Ferrari award for being the most renowned fashion designer in the world, to the Elle Award given to Mr. Armani in Valencia, and the “Leonardo Award” presented to Mr Armani by the Italian Presidente della Repubblica, Giorgio Napolitano, in recognition of his status as a major representative of “Italian Quality” worldwide. In 2008, in Paris, the President of the French Republic, Nicholas Sarkozy, conferred the order of the Légion d’Honneur on the designer.
In 2000, New York’s Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum celebrated the social and cultural influence of Mr. Armani’s career, placing special emphasis on his pioneering design work for the cinema, by staging an exhibition that has since been seen at some of the world’s most prestigious museums, including the Guggenheim Bilbao, London’s Royal Academy of Arts, Berlin’s Neue Nationalgalerie, Rome’s Terme di Diocleziano, Tokyo’s Mori Arts Museum and Shanghai’s Shanghai Art Museum. On February 20th, 2007, the exhibition reached its eighth venue at the Triennale di Milano in an expanded and enriched version with a striking new display over two floors.
In 2005, Giorgio Armani presented his first collection of haute couture, Giorgio Armani Privé, in response to requests from clients who were seeking exclusive clothes of the very highest standard, fulfilling all the criteria of fine bespoke tailoring.
In 2006, Giorgio Armani went to the World Economic Forum in Davos to personally announce his support for (PRODUCT) RED, the pioneering global initiative founded by Bono and Bobby Shriver to fight AIDS in Africa.
In 2007, on the occasion of the 79th Annual Academy Awards, Giorgio Armani presented an exclusive showing of his new Haute Couture Giorgio Armani Privé Spring/Summer 2007 collection to a specially invited audience in the grounds of Ron Burkle’s Green Acres Estate in Beverly Hills. The following day he attended the Oscars.