Christoph Honnefelder was announced as the incoming CEO of the Kylie Beauty brands in January 2020 but never officially assumed the role, according to Coty

By Kaitlyn Frey
June 03, 2020 04:06 PM
Credit: Rich Fury/VF20/Getty

The incoming CEO of Kylie Cosmetics and Kylie Skin has stepped down from his role at beauty conglomerate Coty six months after being appointed the position, though he never officially assumed the title.

After announcing Coty and Kylie Jenner completed their $600 million transaction to create a long-term strategic partnership on January 6, the company named Christophe Honnefelder the CEO of the Kylie Beauty brands and said he would assume the role "in the near future." However, today Coty announced that Honnefelder stepped down from his position at the company "for personal reasons" after never actually filling the role as CEO.

"Coty announced a number of changes that will allow the company to focus on its core Prestige and Mass Beauty businesses, including renewed investment in the e-commerce development of the Prestige Beauty franchise. As part of this effort, we are building a strong foundation to support our strategic partnership with Kylie Jenner," the company said in a statement obtained by PEOPLE.

Christoph Honnefelder
| Credit: LinkedIn

On this morning's investor call, Coty announced Simona Cattaneo, President Luxury Brands, to oversee the expansion of the Kylie Beauty business.

"She assumes these responsibilities from Christoph Honnefelder, who announced to the senior team internally a number of weeks ago that he would not be assuming the role of CEO of Kylie Beauty for personal reasons. Under Simona’s leadership we are excited by the opportunities for the Kylie Beauty business, as indicated by the very successful recent launch of Kylie Skin in Europe," Coty said in the statement.

The news comes less than a week after Forbes published an explosive report debunking Jenner's billionaire status that suggests that the mogul and her team could have been inflating the success of their beauty business over the years.

In the piece titled "Inside Kylie Jenner's Web of Lies — And Why She's No Longer a Billionaire," Forbes suggests that Jenner forged tax documents to augment the success of Kylie Cosmetics and had been misrepresenting her company's growth over the years.

Shortly after the Forbes report was published, Jenner expressed her concerns and denied the allegations on Twitter.

Forbes/Jamel Toppin

"What am i even waking up to. i thought this was a reputable site.. all i see are a number of inaccurate statements and unproven assumptions lol. i’ve never asked for any title or tried to lie my way there EVER. period," she began her Twitter response. "...even creating tax returns that were likely forged” that’s your proof? so you just THOUGHT they were forged? like actually what am i reading."

Jenner concluded her Twitter clap back by saying she's going to focus on the all the positive things in her life: "Okay i am blessed beyond my years, i have a beautiful daughter, and a successful business and i’m doing perfectly fine. i can name a list of 100 things more important right now than fixating on how much money i have."

In an official statement exclusively obtained by PEOPLE, Jenner's attorney Michael Kump says after reviewing Forbes' article accusing the star of "engaging in deceit and a 'web of lies' to inflate her net worth," he can confirm it is "filled with outright lies."

"Forbes’ accusation that Kylie and her accountants 'forged tax returns' is unequivocally false and we are demanding that Forbes immediately and publicly retract that and other statements. It is sad that, of all things, Forbes has devoted three reporters to investigate the effect of the coronavirus crisis on Kylie’s net worth," Kump says in the statement shared with PEOPLE. "We would not expect that from a supermarket tabloid, much less from Forbes."

Coty declined PEOPLE's request for comment on the Forbes report.

Forbes responded to Jenner’s comments with a statement from chief communications officer Matt Hutchison: “Today’s extensively-reported investigation was triggered by newly-filed documents that revealed glaring discrepancies between information privately supplied to journalists and information publicly supplied to shareholders. Our reporters spotted the inaccuracies and spent months uncovering the facts. We encourage the attorney to re-read the article.”