Founded in 1978 in Milan,Gianni Versace Spa is one of the leading international fashion design houses and a symbol of Italian luxury world wide. It designs, manufactures, distributes and retails fashion and lifestyle products including haute couture, prèt-à-porter, accessories, jewellery, watches, eyewear, fragrances, and home furnishings all bearing the distinctive Medusa logo. The Versace Group distributes its products through a world-wide D.O.S network which includes over 200 boutiques in the principal cities and over 1500 wholesalers worldwide. Donatella Versace has been Artistic Director of Versace since 1997 and has steered the brand into the 21st century. Today, Versace represents its heritage through its strong and fearless designs, while addressing a new global audience which continues to strengthen Versace’s position in contemporary culture. In 2000 Gianni Versace Spa opened Palazzo Versace, the first hotel project to be branded by a luxury goods company, which provides tourists and travellers the opportunity to experience and enjoy the complete Versace lifestyle. The second Palazzo Versace built in Dubai opened in 2015. The third Palazzo Versace will be built in Macau, China. In February 2014, Gianni Versace Spa announced its agreement with Blackstone to participate in the next phase of the Company’s development. Blackstone owns 20 percent of the company, while the Versace family remains at its heart, with Ms. Allegra Versace Beck, Ms. Donatella Versace and Mr. Santo Versace all playing important roles in the company. Donatella Versace holds the dual role of Vice President of the board and Artistic Director. In May 2016, the Versace Group appointed Mr. Jonathan Akeroyd to the position of CEO and member of the company’s Board of Directors.