Damas CEO wants to use 'real women, not influencers', as brand ambassadors

The world of social media influencing is 'distorting reality' and putting pressure on women to look and act a certain way, says Asil Attar
Damas CEO wants to use 'real women, not influencers', as brand ambassadors
By Lubna Hamdan
Sun 16 Jun 2019 01:21 PM

The CEO of leading Middle East retailer Damas Jewellery wants to use ‘real women’ as opposed to social media influencers as brand ambassadors.

Speaking to Arabian Business, Asil Attar said it’s her responsibility as a female CEO to feature real women in marketing campaigns.

“I’ve been in the industry for 25 years and have experienced a number of journeys as a female in different corporate roles… One of the biggest responsibilities I have as an ambassador for women’s empowerment is to sit at the helm of this company and make sure we talk about real stories and real women and real moments.

So as much as I’m incredibly respectful of influencers and celebrities - and of course, they all have a moment and place to play in different campaigns and brands and businesses - for me, it’s about speaking to real women because at the end of the day, that is my customer. The ambassadors we’ll be looking at are around real women with real experience that are empowered, have a story to tell and that you can resonate and relate to,” she said.

Attar, who is Damas’ first female CEO, said the world of social media influencing is ‘distorting reality’ and putting pressure on the way women must look and act.

“I have huge respect for all that [social media influencers] have gained and actually the ability and platforms that now enable these women to come out and influence those around them. But unfortunately with any kind of media, it does sort of distort the reality, so they become mixed in this imagination.

Then there’s the tremendous pressure to look and feel and act a certain way and then you start to promote different brands and it becomes more of an industry rather than a reality. And I’m very mindful of that; that’s not a message we want to sell. We want to sell real stories to real women who will then resonate with the real; who we are,” said Attar.

The chief executive has previously worked with The Giorgio Armani Group, and as the CEO of Majid Al Futtaim and Al Yasra Fashion. In her role, Attar will overlook the company’s portfolio of over 40 international luxury brands and in-house brands, with 230 stores spread across the GCC.

Damas Jewellery is one of the oldest brands in the UAE, having been founded in 1907 as a goldsmith.

It opened its first store in the Dubai Gold Souk in 1959 and continues to operate it to this day.

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