The Launchmetrics 5 Questions With… interview series provides a way to connect industry leaders from the fashion, luxury, and beauty industries, and gives a platform for them to share their best advice and expertise.
For this episode of the series, we spoke with Chloe Reuter, an entrepreneur who has been living in China and Asia for 30 years. She is Founding Partner and CEO of Gusto Luxe, Asia’s leading integrated luxury consulting business, helping brands grow in China and Asia. She is also Founding Partner and Vice Chair of Gusto Collective, Asia’s first brand tech holding company (which acquired a majority stake in Chloé’s company in June 2020, previously called Reuter Communications)
Chloé is an inspirational leader who believes that successful businesses must be built on kindness and diversity. She is actively involved with supporting women initiatives and a frequently sought after keynote speaker (in English, French and Chinese) on Luxury in Asia. She sits on the Advisory Board of Durham University Business School and recently graduated from the Financial Times Non-Executive Director Diploma programme.
What do you love most about your job?
What I love most about my job is that no two days are the same. It’s engaging, It’s busy and it’s fascinating because we are constantly evolving the business. My role is really shaping the vision and the strategy for how we keep growing and how we keep advancing.
How has the industry changed since you started your career?
I would say the industry has completely transformed since I started the business back in 2010. In those days, communications and marketing were relatively straightforward and in China, we didn’t have many of the apps, social media platforms and eCommerce companies, which we’re using today. It’s been a massive change and evolution for our business. In order to keep up and stay relevant, we’ve had to develop and adapt our services to correspond to that transformation.
It’s never a dull day and always a challenge, which is what I love.
What lessons have you learned from this new virtual world we have had to adapt to?
I think the key takeaways from the last two years have been that while we planned for a lot of potential risk scenarios, no one had ever planned for a pandemic, certainly not in my industry. I think what it really taught us is that through digital tools and technical innovation, we’ve actually been able to transform the business and that’s been a real positive for us. I think that we’ve leapfrogged in such a short time. I think had there not been the pandemic, we would’ve probably taken a lot longer to evolve. So I think we’ve had to find solutions when, for example, offline events weren’t possible or when people couldn’t come into the office. Luckily we now have many great tech tools out there to enable us to do that.
If you had a magic wand and could create one tool that would help your company operate better, what would it be?
To be honest, I’m actually really happy with the way our company operates, and especially the culture of kindness in our DNA. I think that that’s really due to the talent we have. If I could have a magic wand, it would be to create different types of talent and to be able to bring them rapidly into the company. I think that the key for any business really lies in its ability to keep developing. In order to evolve the business, you don’t just need the best types of talent and you need different types of talent. So my magic wand would enable me to quickly bring in incredible talent and get them working with us on how we transform the business.
What’s one tip that you would give your younger self?
If I had one tip, I would give my youngest self, it would probably be don’t stress and worry as much, enjoy the ride. Being an entrepreneur is highly stressful at times, especially in the early days. When you are in the thick of it, it’s not always easy to remember to just have fun because there’s so, so many challenges. I would tell my younger self, it will all be alright in the end. So just enjoy it or try to enjoy it as much as you can.