When Richard Baker, the chairman and chief executive officer of Hudson’s Bay Co., began the process of buying Saks Fifth Avenue last spring, he had all the financial and due diligence help he could use. Understanding the heart and soul of Saks was another matter.
That’s where Jaqui Lividini, a former Saks fashion merchandising and communications executive and already a close adviser to Baker with his Lord & Taylor and Hudson’s Bay department store holdings, entered the picture. “He needed someone to help with the brand vision, what direction the brand should take, and what I saw as the opportunities for Saks — where its place was in the competitive landscape,” said Lividini. Six weeks later, well before the deal was done, Lividini & Co. handed Baker a 50-page report painting a portrait of Saks and its potential.
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