Browse all

Zuckerberg has been in Milan and a controversy has already broken out

It all started with a group photo published by Federico Marchetti

Zuckerberg has been in Milan and a controversy has already broken out It all started with a group photo published by Federico Marchetti

Life imitates art. Just as in Succession the Roy clan landed in Milan to discuss business, this week Mark Zuckerberg also visited the city «to discuss plans for new smart glasses with Leonardo Del Vecchio and the EssilorLuxottica team», as the founder of Meta wrote posting on Instagram a photo that shows him with the mega-entrepreneur Leonardo Del Vecchio. In the shot, Del Vecchio was wearing «a prototype of our neural interface EMG wristband that will eventually let you control your glasses and other devices», according to the caption. Yesterday, however, Zuckerberg met with Yoox founder Federico Marchetti, who posted a group photo of them together with the top names in Italian fashion entrepreneurship: the dauphin of the Prada empire, Lorenzo Bertelli; Brunello Cucinelli, Diego Della Valle, Remo Ruffini of Moncler, Renzo Rosso of OTB Group; Salvatore Ferragamo CEO Marco Gobetti; and Geoffroy Lefebvre of Yoox Net-A-Porter Group. The snapshot of them together, "soccer team" style, sparked a discussion in the comments, with some users pointing out the lack of diversity in the photo.  

Marchetti shared his disappointment about the lack of women's representation in the picture and added: «Well, I in my own small way am a founding member of the Global Coalition of Change that deals with just that. And again, "Women in Tech" is an initiative of mine that brought women to one-third in technology and innovation in my old company (starting at 10) and 50% in my Executive Committee». Underlining in this way the fact that the lack of women in the photo was accidental - but also exposing the systematic absence of diversity within the Italian ruling class. Recently, in any case, the issue of diversity has been addressed by the Fashion Chamber, which in the report Women and Fashion: the 2022 barometer promoted by PwC Italy and released only yesterday, noted an 11.6% increase in female executives on Italian fashion boards, which now account for a quarter of the total, about 25.6%. Results far from France's 41.7%, the U.S.'s 37.9% and the U.K.'s 36%, as chairman Carlo Capasa himself noted, saying that «one must look only at the path that still remains to be traveled, certainly long». Among the most virtuous companies in this sense are Brunello Cucinelli and Salvatore Ferragamo, represented in the photo by Marco Gobetti, both of which have six women on their boards.

Also yesterday, among other things, the entrepreneur Elisabetta Franchi, who was absent in Marchetti's shot, said in an interview that she prefers the hiring of men or women who «already made their rounds», referring to marriage, children and divorce/separation. In the same week, on Instagram, always Franchi had shared a photo that depicted a girl wearing only a low-cut and tight suit, intent on holding the umbrella for a Moto GP rider at the Circuit De Jerez writing: «What would big men do without us little women?» Another phrase that, coupled with the representation of a woman in such a blatantly ancillary role, evidenced the presence of a vaguely sexist corporate culture, in which the values of diversity have penetrated, but which still struggles to find a space both for women and for the private lives of individuals in general - considering how Franchi appears to consider the events in the lives of her managers as unprofitable detours in the life of her company.

Returning to Marchetti's shot, however, Renzo Rosso reposted the photo with the caption «Inspiring discussion about the meta-future», thus suggesting that the meeting between these heavyweights of Italian fashion entrepreneurship has something to do with the evolution of the fashion world in the metaverse. Already Del Vecchio and EssilorLuxottica are deeply involved in the expansion of Meta's empire, and it's to be expected that such an unofficial summit, which includes representatives of virtually all of Italy's major luxury industrial groups, will soon have a follow up in their businesses as well - considering how precisely fashion could become one of the most important businesses to develop in the metaverse, where not only are avatar costumes and accessories becoming more and more in demand as the number of users increases, but also new generations of future consumers have begun to congregate and hang out through the spread of cryptocurrency trading.