Retail appointments of the week

VF Corp searching for new CEO following shock retirement

by Dean Blake

Global fashion house VF Corp has appointed lead independent director Benno Dorer as its interim president and chief executive, following this week’s announcement that chairman and CEO Steve Rendle retired effective immediately.

The business has kicked off an internal and external search for a permanent replacement, but for now Rendle’s workload will be handled by Dorer and interim chairman Richard Carucci.

“The board thanks Steve for his many contributions and leadership during his nearly six years as CEO, and nearly 25 years with VF Corp,” said Dorer in a statement.

“Steve’s commitment to the business, passion for building strong brands and focus on culture have helped VF evolve our portfolio of strong active-lifestyle brands and establish VF as a purpose-led company.”

Rendle said it had been an honour to have served in the role, and that he was looking forward to watching the company’s continued success. 

Alongside the announcement, the business reduced its outlook for FY23 due to anticipated weakening demand, and wholesale order cancellations. 

The Body Shop’s global retail director steps down

by Dean Blake

Wellness brand The Body Shop’s global retail director Linda Campbell has stepped down from her role after 8 years at the company, and less than a year in the role. 

Previously, Campbell served as the head of the company’s UK operations, and was promoted to the global role in January 2022. However, Campbell is understood to have exited the business in November, according to a report in Retail Week

The business’ global sales development manager Marcin Kucharski also confirmed he had exited the business as of November, and said in a post on Linkedin he “hopes to share a longer post later at some point to share some updates”. 

The business has struggled to find its feet following the pandemic according to Retail Gazette, which said The Body Shop owner Natura said the business’ UK arm “continued to post challenging results amid channel decline” in the last quarter. 

It isn’t yet clear whether Campbell and Kucharski have new positions elsewhere, or if they left for similar reasons. 

Prada hires former Luxottica chief Andrea Guerra as new CEO

by Harish Sridharen and Claudia Cristoferi of Reuters

Italian fashion group Prada confirmed on Tuesday that it would name former Luxottica chief Andrea Guerra as its new chief executive officer to ease a transition at the helm to the next generation of the founding family.

Current CEO Patrizio Bertelli, 76, will be appointed chairman of the luxury company at annual shareholder meeting next spring. He will replace Paolo Zannoni who will be recommended for the role of executive deputy chairman of the group and chairman of its parent company Prada Holding.

Current co-CEO Miuccia Prada, 73, will remain creative director of the Miu Miu and Prada brands – the latter together with Belgian designer Raf Simons – and a board member.

Reuters reported last week that the fashion group was set to hire Guerra in a top management role to ease the succession path of the Hong Kong-listed group founded in Milan in 1913 as a leather goods shop by designer Miuccia Prada’s grandfather and his brother.

After overseeing a successful turnaround since 2017 to reverse a slide in sales, Bertelli said a year ago he planned to hand over the reins of the group he leads with wife Miuccia Prada to their 34-year-old son Lorenzo.

“This is a fundamental step we have decided to undertake, while completely engaged in the company, to contribute more to the evolution of the Prada Group and to ease the succession of Lorenzo Bertelli, the future leader of the group,” they said in Tuesday’s statement.

Guerra, 57, will be recommended as the new CEO at a board meeting to be held on Jan 26 by Prada Holding, which owns 80 per cent of Prada group.

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