TRUE RELIGION CFO: Premium denim company True Religion Apparel Inc. named Peter Collins, the former corporate controller for Nordstrom Inc., as chief financial officer. Collins, 42, replaces Charles Lesser, who helped oversee Los Angeles-based True Religion’s transition to a public company through a reverse merger in 2003. The company said Lesser will consult on special projects through September. In addition, True Religion plans to open a 1,233-square-foot branded store in August at the Village at Corte Madera shopping center in California’s Marin County.
CHANEL PROTEST: More than 100 people demonstrated outside Chanel’s cosmetics factory in the Paris suburb of Pantin Tuesday. France’s Labor Union, the Confédération Générale de Travail, called for the protest after Chanel announced it was transferring its lipstick production from the Pantin factory to the company’s factories in Chamant and Compiègne, both in the Oise region of northern France. The CGT claims 34 people will be laid off and 103 will be transferred to the new sites as a result. In a statement describing the plan, dubbed Horizon 2009, Chanel said the 115-year-old Pantin site would not be able to satisfy the future regulatory standards of the cosmetics market. The company also said 53 jobs would be created at the other sites, resulting in an increase of employment overall in the next two years. Chanel has 3,500 employees in France.
BABY TALK: French holding company EPI, controlled by the Descours family, said recently it had purchased Bonpoint, a high-end French children’s brand, from Edmond de Rothschild LBO Fund. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. “[Bonpoint] is a reference in its category and we are convinced of its potential in France and abroad,” said Christopher Descours, president of EPI, who will preside over Bonpoint’s board. Bonpoint’s president, Richard Albert, will remain in that position. According to Descours, the purchase corresponds with the firm’s goal to “increase its luxury brand portfolio,” which includes high-end labels J.M. Weston, François Pinet, Michel Perry and Alain Figaret. EPI also recently revealed the sale of its 25 percent stake in French fast-fashion conglomerate Vivarte.