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LOS ANGELES — Citing a conflict with the board, Taryn Rose is stepping down as president of the company she founded 10 years ago, Taryn Rose International.
This story first appeared in the March 10, 2008 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
Rose, a former orthopedic surgeon whose search for a comfortable and fashionable shoe led to creating her own line, said, “I had a different vision for the future and operations of the company and it was too divergent from the point of view of the board, so we mutually decided it was best for me to resign.”
Although Rose declined to be specific, she said the differences were over the business operations and management of the company. “For the sake the staff, whom I still care very much about, it was better for me not to be in constant battle with the management,” she said.
Rose has resigned from the board but remains a minority shareholder in the $40 million-plus firm, which launched handbag and jewelry lines last year. There are no plans to name another president.
“Like many other companies, we are moving from a personality-based business to a brand-based business, and we are excited by the opportunities,” said chief executive officer Andrew Forbes.
Forbes said the company’s priority was expanding its wholesale business internationally and growing into a $100 million brand in three to five years.
The company has not announced plans for the product going forward, but said it will reevaluate the handbag line and will discontinue jewelry.
Chief investor and chairman David Crossland came on board in June 2006, and named Forbes ceo in September 2007. Forbes came to the U.S. with Vidal Sassoon in the Eighties and became ceo of Jimmy Choo when the company launched Stateside in 1997.
Taryn Rose International comprises the signature designer shoe line and a secondary line called Taryn by Taryn Rose. It operates boutiques in Beverly Hills, New York, Las Vegas and San Jose, Calif., and wholesales at Neiman Marcus, Saks Fifth Avenue, Bloomingdale’s, Nordstrom, Dillard’s, Harrods, Zappos.com and independent boutiques.
The premium line of the Italian-made shoes starts at $400 retail and reaches as much as $3,000 for product made of exotic skins. The average price point for the secondary line is about $245. Rose worked with design teams based in both the Culver City, Calif., headquarters and in Italy.
Rose, who emigrated to the U.S. from Vietnam when she was eight years old, is considering other creative endeavors and has started a new company called Mille Rosas, or “A Thousand Roses.”