Reversing the trend of top fashion executives being poached by Apple, in 2015 LVMH appointed the technology company’s former senior director of iTunes to the newly created position of chief digital officer. The appointment gave digital a seat at the top table of the world’s largest luxury conglomerate for the first time.
Prior to joining LVMH, Rogers carved out an impressive career in the music tech industry, helping music businesses make the transition to online. He began whilst still a computer student at Indiana University in 1993, when he was tapped to run the website for hip-hop group The Beastie Boys. In the early 2000s, Rogers spent nearly five years running a music service owned by Yahoo, before being named chief executive of Topspin Media — a platform that connected artists directly to their fans via the internet — in 2008.
In 2013, he joined music streaming service Beats Music as chief executive. Rogers arrived at Apple in 2014 after the company’s $3 billion acquisition of Beats Music and headphone maker Beats Electronics. As senior director of Apple Music, Rogers spearheaded Apple’s foray into music streaming services and was also instrumental in the creation of online radio station Beats 1, which poached former BBC Radio One DJ Zane Lowe and famously featured Elton John, Dr. Dre and Pharrell Williams as guest announcers. However, Rogers departed Apple just two months after the launch of Apple Music, announcing his new position at LVMH shortly after.
Rogers jumped ship to LVMH with the intention of developing the conglomerate’s online retail presence — a move many competing luxury players have interpreted as a signal to step up their own digital and e-commerce strategies. In a statement made at the time, LVMH chairman and chief executive Bernard Arnault said he hoped Rogers would help “explore new opportunities for the group in the digital sphere” — a space high fashion brands have been notoriously slow to tap.
In July, Rogers spearheaded the LVMH Lab at Paris’ new ‘Viva Technology’ show, bringing together almost 50 start-ups to the luxury sector.