‘I have a duty to stay on for 20,000 workers including my daughter’: Apprentice star Karren Brady STILL won’t condemn Sir Philip Green as she refuses to quit as chairman of his empire
- Karren Brady has vowed to remain chairman of Philip Green’s fashion empire
- She has insisted that she has a duty to its employees – including her daughter
- The 49-year-old claimed she did not want to take the ‘easy’ option of resigning
- Sir Philip has been accused of sexual harassment and racial abuse of staff
- The Topshop tycoon strenuously denies the allegations and all unlawful conduct
Karren Brady has vowed to remain chairman of Philip Green’s scandal-hit fashion empire, insisting that she has a duty to its employees – including her daughter.
The 49-year-old Apprentice star said she would stay at Taveta Investments whose 20,000 staff include her child, Sophia Peschisolido, who MailOnline understands works in the Topshop social media department.
Miss Peschisolido, who is Baroness Brady’s only daughter with her ex-footballer husband Paul Peschisolido, has also worked as a model for Sir Philip’s high street fashion chain.
She claimed she did not want to take the ‘easy’ option of resigning from the holding company, which owns Sir Philip’s Arcadia group.
He has been accused of sexual harassment and racial abuse of staff, some of whom were allegedly paid up to £1million to sign non-disclosure agreements. Sir Philip strenously denies the allegations and all unlawful conduct.
Karren Brady said she would stay at Taveta Investments whose 20,000 staff include her daughter, Sophia Peschisolido (pictured together), who works as a social media content assistant for Topshop
Baroness Brady’s agent issued a statement to the Daily Telegraph, saying: ‘You want Baroness Brady to resign from Taveta but she feels a real sense of duty to the 20,000 people who work there, one of which is her daughter, to remain in post.
Baroness Brady has refused to condemn Sir Philip Green (who she is seen with) despite criticising other rich men facing similar claims
‘I hope you would agree that walking away is the easy thing to do – staying in the role and ensuring the company is robust going forward is much harder.
‘She has made significant and lasting changes to the business since she became chairman and will continue to do so, ensuring that the company maintains the standards expected of it.’
In an earlier statement issued through her public relations team, she said: ‘I want to be 100 per cent clear – I have always been an outspoken defender of women’s rights in the workplace and always will be. As chairman of Taveta I am extremely proud of our people, our customers and our brands. My primary concern are the 20,000 people who work there of which over 85 per cent are women.’
Sophia, 22, modelled for Arcadia offshoot Topshop two years ago, prompting her proud mother to post an online photograph of her ‘amazing’ debut – an image of her wearing the brand’s denim skirt and boots.
After also modelling for rival retailer Hollister, the Nottingham University graduate moved into her role as a social media content assistant for Topman in August 2016.
On Friday, Sir Philip was permitted to drop a court injunction that prevented the media from reporting allegations made by five of his former staff.
Sir Philip Green with his wife Tina (left) and daughter Chloe (right) in Cannes in 2017. He has denied wrongdoing and said the non-disclosure agreements remain in place
One female employee reportedly received more than £1million after alleging that the mogul groped her.
He was accused of grabbing the face of a second woman, and taking another female worker in a headlock and sexually harassing her.
He is alleged to have told a senior black male employee that his ‘problem’ was that he was ‘still throwing spears in the jungle’, before mocking his dreadlocks and saying he smoked cannabis.
Lady Brady previously accused former defence secretary Michael Fallon, Harvey Weinstein and Kevin Spacey of abusing their power ‘because they have a fundamental lack of respect for others’.
She has also said publicly that she sacked a footballer accused of assaulting a woman, despite his value to her club.
Lady Brady, who is the vice-chairman of West Ham United, is married to the Canadian former footballer Paul Peschisolido, 47, who played for several clubs in England including Stoke City and Derby County.
The couple, who married in 1995 when she was managing director of Birmingham City football club, also have a son called Paolo. They live in a £3million home in Knightsbridge.
Baroness Brady’s past comments on harassment
On inappropriate behaviour at work:
‘Lots of men are asking, “When is it appropriate to touch a colleague?” If you are in any doubt, how about…NEVER.’
‘Employers who turn a blind eye to repeated reports of assault and harassment become facilitators and enablers.’
‘To call someone a girl is belittling, disrespectful and a real indication that you don’t see her as an equal.’
On Harvey Weinstein:
‘Even if that kind of behaviour was acceptable a few decades ago you’d think that a clever man like him would be able to grasp the pretty basic notion that Times. Have. Changed.’
On Sir Philip Green in her book, Strong Woman:
‘He is without doubt the most dynamic, the most energetic, the most relentless business-person I have ever come across, a whirlwind of energy and ideas.
‘I have never met anyone quite like him… More importantly, he is a great mentor to all the people in his organisation and enjoys engaging with people at every level of the business.’