LOS ANGELES — Guess Inc. announced key changes to its executive roster on Wednesday, including the departure of its chief financial officer, as the company focuses on expanding its international business and managing the transformation from a wholesaler to a retailer.
Los Angeles-based Guess, which was a pioneer in the designer denim industry, has been diversifying its business, including starting a breakout division called Marciano. Retail operations now make up 80 percent of revenue, compared with 25 percent in 2000.
"We move where the market is moving," said Paul Marciano, co-chairman and chief executive officer, who founded Guess in 1981 with his brother, Maurice. "The growth in international is taking center stage for us, if not front stage."
Marciano said Guess opened 45 freestanding retail apparel stores and 57 accessories stores outside the U.S. last year. "We plan bigger numbers than that in 2006," Marciano said, targeting cities such as St. Petersburg, Athens, Istanbul, New Delhi, Ho Chi Minh City, Sydney, Beijing and Shanghai.
The turnaround at Guess has occurred during the last six years as the domestic premium denim sector exploded with aggressive upstarts and foreign countries offered new opportunities with a growing middle class.
Finances also rebounded. Guess reported net earnings of $29.6 million on net revenue of $729.3 million in 2004, up from net earnings of $7.3 million on net revenue of $636.6 million in 2003. By comparison, in 2000 the company had net earnings of $16.5 million on net revenue of $779.2 million.
Guess said Frederick G. Silny will depart as cfo on May 9 to pursue other opportunities. Silny didn't return a call for comment.
Carlos Alberini, Guess's president and chief operating officer, will handle duties as finance chief until a successor is named. "We will definitely emphasize an international background with a lot of strategic vision," Alberini said in describing the search for Silny's replacement. "We think that is what the company needs today and that's where we are going."
Guess also said that Stephen Pearson, who was executive vice president at J. Jill Group, had been hired as executive vice president and chief supply chain officer, and that Laurent Marchal, who was managing director of Zara Canada, signed on as president of Guess Canada. Both are newly created positions reporting to Alberini.The company also announced five promotions: Harriet Sustarsic, senior vice president and general merchandise manager in the retail division; Wendy Klarik, senior vice president and general merchandise manager in the factory division; Guiliano Sartori, vice president for international licensing business development; Stephane Labelle, senior vice president for licensing products for Guess Europe, and, Terence Tsang, senior vice president for corporate business development with a focus on Asia and India.
These five executives will report directly to Paul Marciano.
The announcement came a week before Guess is scheduled to release its fourth-quarter earnings. Guess shares were down 25 cents on Wednesday, closing at $42.49 in New York Stock Exchange trading.
@margotrobbie steps out onto the red carpet wearing @miumiu. The actress is nominated for “Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Leading Role” in “I, Tonya” at the #SagAwards. (📷: Stewart Cook) #wwdfashion
For @massimogiorgetti of @msgm, the Nineties are his favorite decade. “They had a huge impact on my personal growth. What I like of the Nineties is that they are not so precise in terms of style as other decades…there was actually a bit of everything,” he said. As seen on MSGM’s Spring 2018 show: tie-dye and a bit of grunge, two styles that are synonymous with the decade #wwdfashion #wwddecades (📷: @kukukuba)
Breaking News: @hedislimane joins @celine as its new artistic, creative and image director. One of fashion’s preeminent image-makers and trendsetters, Slimane is to join the LVMH brand on Feb. 1 and unveil his first fashion proposition for men and women next September during Paris Fashion Week. It marks a major homecoming for Slimane, who cemented his reputation – and influenced men’s tailoring for more than a decade – as the designer of Dior Homme between 2000 and 2007. He went on to reinvent and ignite the house of Yves Saint Laurent, which he rechristened Saint Laurent, between 2012 and 2016 – all the while maintaining a close relationship with the Arnault family, which controls LVMH and Dior. Read the full exclusive story on WWD.com. Link in bio. #wwdnews #wwdfashion
“Personally I believe the Eighties have been the richest and more vivacious period for international fashion,” Giorgio Armani said when asked what his favorite decade of fashion is. It was a moment of disruption and experimentation and only thinking back to the first years of that decade is always an emotion for me, for what they have meant to me and my work.” The influence is clear in @giorgioarmani spring 2018 collection, pictured here, which was full of bright colors and unexpected prints. Read more about which decades designers loved most on WWD.com #wwdfashion #wwddecades (📷: @aitorrosasphoto)
For Lady Gaga’s only Italian show on her “Joanne World Tour,” the singer wore a range of @versace_official outfits. The standout piece: this custom-made bodysuit inspired by the brand’s spring 2018 collection. #wwdfashion (RG: @ladygaga)
@_camillaruth_ is expanding on the wellness-craze concept with @westbourne – a new NYC restaurant that’s both a healthy-minded café as well as a business that gives back to the community. Marcus works with the Robin Hood foundation to give back to The Door, a non-profit providing youth development services, and also hires employees through The Door. Read our full interview with Marcus on giving back through food on WWD.com. #wwdeye (📷: @lexieblacklock)