Brown Thomas boss lauded by fashion mag
Brown Thomas boss Paul Kelly has been announced as the third most important person in menswear in the UK by the influential fashion magazine GQ.
The Waterford executive, who is also CEO of Selfridges, was given the accolade, which was judged on creativity, work, social connections and inspiration for other men in the style stakes.
"My father worked in retail so I guess it's in my DNA and happily it was he who encouraged me into the sector," said the retail executive yesterday.
"Although he did warn me that to succeed I would need to be prepared to work hard and put in the long hours, and he was definitely right.
"Of course it's very flattering to be considered an important influencer within the industry, but to be honest, and more importantly, it's recognition for how well-regarded the Selfridges business is in the UK and the Brown Thomas business is here."
Asked about his most important style influence he said: "The great Hollywood actor, Cary Grant. He was suave, sophisticated and the epitome of style."
Mr Kelly, 58, first rose to become a senior buyer in Dunnes Stores before moving on to the Brown Thomas group in 1984, where he managed a small chain called Gaywear, which he successfully revamped as A-Wear.
Topping the list is Philip Green, who owns the Arcadia Group, while Jaeger owner Harold Tillman is in second place.
Mr Kelly is third, followed by such influential figures as Paul Smith and Christopher Bailey of Burberry.