PARIS/MILAN, April 25 (Reuters) - Shareholders of French luxury group Kering approved three new appointments to the board on Thursday, after the departure of members including long-time executive Jean-François Palus.

The new board members are Rachel Duan, who worked at General Electric for 25 years, Dominique D'Hinnin, formerly chief financial officer for Lagardere and current chairman of Eutelsat, and former Italian culture minister Giovanna Melandri.

Palus stepped down to focus on his current role running Gucci, Kering's star label that is undergoing an overhaul aimed at reigniting sales.

Tidjane Thiam, leader of one of Ivory Coast's main opposition parties, resigned citing political commitments, while the mandate of actor Emma Watson expired.


The replacement of the three board members is part of a sweeping overhaul at the upper levels of Kering as it seeks to turn around Gucci, which accounts for two-thirds of profit and has fallen sharply behind rivals in recent years.


Kering shares have dropped around 17% since the beginning of the year. On Tuesday it warned it expects first half operating profit to drop by 40% to 45% after first-quarter sales declined due to lacklustre demand at Gucci. (Reporting by Elisa Anzolin and Mimosa Spencer;Editing by Elaine Hardcastle)