HOT 100 2014: Gavin Murphy, Breitling

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Gavin Murphy has spent the majority of his career in the menswear industry, using his sharp business skills, proactive management style and warm personality to lift the fortunes of brands including Lyle & Scott, Duchamp and Gieves & Hawkes.

But last year it was time for a change of scene, and Gavin joined the watch world with a role at Breitling.

He started out as sales director and spent his days frantically learning the ropes of the watch business, then in May this year he was promoted and is taking his first steps as UK managing director.

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Gavin is taking to the top job in a cool and collected manner – dizzying heights being something he’s mastered this year after a nail-biting 12,500ft parachute jump with the Breitling jet team.

He’s picked a good year to takeover at Breitling. Sales in the UK were up 30% last year – a record-breaking bump for the UK division – despite the brand streamlining its stockists by 10%.

It also opened a flagship on London’s Bond Street to great fanfare and personal appearances by ambassadors David Beckham and John Travolta, plus moved its HQ to Cavendish Square where relaunching the Breitling for Bentley range has been a key focus.

“We have a much stronger brand position and gained increased market share in 2013,” says Gavin. “We have a shared vision of where we want to go, stronger visual presence, more engaged and knowledgeable teams selling the brand in the stores, and ultimately a more intimate business partnership with our retailers to deliver the Breitling experience to the end consumer.”

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