Patrick Thomas will serve as an independent board member at the company, which is looking to scale up its production process to create lab-grown leather alternatives derived from the root structure of mushrooms.
Thomas served as chief executive at Hermès between 2003 and 2014 and has also held C-level positions with Lancaster Group and Pernod Ricard. He joins the company at a time of increasing interest in alternative materials that can reduce fashion’s environmental and social impact or are cruelty free.
MycoWorks closed a $45 million series B funding round last year and is working with Hermès to reimagine the brand’s “Victoria” travel bag incorporating a material developed by the startup. The company said Thomas’ appointment is independent of its relationship with Hermès.
The leather-goods powerhouse is testing alternative materials in a break with tradition, reimagining its ‘Victoria’ travel bag in a lab-grown substitute.