Undaunted by the pandemic, the linen luxury industry is proving to be an enduring market segment for several key players, including European brand Frette. So Chief of Staff Asia sat down with its global CEO Filippo Arnaboldi (pictured, right) to discuss its forays into Singapore and Vietnam, the company’s employer brand, and his personal leadership style and experience.
With a 22-year career, the global leader has carved a name for himself and Frette in the category of luxury linens. Arnaboldi oversees every facet of Frette’s global business, while leading its employees and ensuring satisfied customers at every level.
For his Asian ventures, Arnaboldi increased Frette’s brand clout across the region by setting up stores in Vietnam, Singapore, and China despite the ongoing pandemic. Frette’s sales have spiked in each of its flagship stores in Southeast Asia, in particular the Singapore store, which opened at Marina Bay Sands in August 2021.
Taking leverage on this, the brand has since its Singapore retail presence with another branch at the Takashimaya mall in Orchard.
Arnaboldi’s wealth of experience in the luxury linens category stems from his senior management positions with Frette. He first joined the brand in 1999, becoming global CEO in September 2017 having earlier held positions as vice president and general manager of Frette North America.
Frette and its Asian connections
COS Asia: Coming from a European background, can you share how Frette has manoeuvreed into the Asian luxury market,.
Arnaboldi: Frette’s evolution from bed linen expert to luxury lifestyle brand has been pivotal in the House’s ongoing growth and success worldwide. Many of our Asian clients are discerning world travellers, so they are familiar with Frette beyond the private home. Frette may be found in some of the world’s most exclusive hotels, on private yachts and jets, in clubs and spas – the list goes on.
There is an opportunity to experience the luxury of Frette no matter where you may go, so when entering the Asian market, we weren’t starting from zero. Now, it’s a pleasure to serve our clients who call Asia home in their own markets.
COS Asia: Jumping into the Asian work culture, how does Frette demonstrate diversity in this part of the world?
Arnaboldi: We have had ties to Asia, thanks to the global reach of Frette through our hospitality partners, who were, and continue to be, wonderful partners and resources as we expand our reach on the continent. Their support, and the support of incredible local partners, have allowed us to serve the unique needs and preferences of the market.
We respect and appreciate local customs and traditions and have been working diligently to engage on this level to build personal relationships with all our staff and partners.