NEW BALANCE HEAD STEPS DOWN: Jim Davis, who bought New Balance 35 years ago, will resign as chief executive officer of the nearly $1.6 billion activewear firm on April 30 to make way for a new leader from outside the company. Davis, 62, will stay as chairman of the family-owned firm, but will cede the ceo post to Robert T. DeMartini, 45, who has more than 22 years of experience in the consumer products industry. Most recently vice president in the consumer products division at Tyson Foods Inc., DeMartini has held positions at Procter & Gamble Co. and Gillette Co. Davis' wife, Anne Davis, will remain vice chairman, and the couple will be "very involved in the company," according to a New Balance spokeswoman. The Davis family bought the company when it turned out 30 pairs of shoes a day. It is now ranked at number 488 on the Forbes' list of the world's richest people, with an estimated wealth of $2 billion.
KELLWOOD PROMOTES CONTROLLER: Kellwood Co. has promoted Daniel L. Karpel to vice president controller. Karpel joined Kellwood in January 2006 as controller. Before that, he was director of planning and financial analysis at Spartech Corp., and during his 14-year career, he also has worked at NuVox Communications Inc. and Ernst & Young. Based in St. Louis, Karpel reports to Greg Kleffner, Kellwood senior vice president finance and controller.
OUTSOURCED WEB STORE: Kenneth Cole has signed a multimillion-dollar, five-year agreement with Accretive Commerce to handle hosting, technology, customer service and fulfillment for its online store. "The e-commerce channel represents a major growth area for our company," said Kenneth Cole, chairman and chief executive officer of Kenneth Cole Productions, in a statement. The company hopes to improve customer service and conversion rates with the new service. Accretive Commerce, based in Charlotte, N.C., also runs Web stores for American Eagle Outfitters, Restoration Hardware and Godiva.
Harrods plans to remove the famous statue of Princess Diana and Dodi Al Fayed from the bottom of the Egyptian escalators and hand it back to Mohamed Al-Fayed. “We are very proud to have played our role in celebrating the lives of Diana, Princess of Wales and Dodi Al Fayed at Harrods and to have welcomed people from around the world to visit the memorial for the past 20 years,” said Michael Ward, Harrods managing director. “With the announcement of the new official memorial statue to Diana, Princess of Wales at Kensington Palace, we feel that the time is right to return this memorial to Mr. Al Fayed and for the public to be invited to pay their respects at the palace.” More on the news, with reporting by @loreleimarfil, at WWD.com. #wwdnews
@prada is introducing a new project at its men’s fall 2018 show this Sunday: “Prada Invites.” The fashion house invited four celebrated creative minds – @ronanaerwanbouroullec, Konstantin Grcic, @herzogdemeuron and @rem.koolhaas – to each create a unique item with its iconic nylon material. The designs will be unveiled on the runway show, which will take place at the company’s warehouse in Viale Ortles 25. #wwdfashion #mfwm (📷: @martinocarrera)
@kering_official is spinning off its stake in puma in an effort to focus on its luxury brands, the brand operator announced yesterday. “We are proud to have supported the turnaround of Puma, which now has unrivaled capabilities to take full advantage of the specific dynamics of its global markets and is poised to achieve substantial growth,” said François-Henri Pinault, Kering’s chief executive officer and chairman. Artémis will become a “long-term strategic shareholder” of Puma with a 29 percent stake. #wwdnews #wwdfashion (📷: @jilliansollazzo)
The fashion world mourns for celebrated street style photographer, Nabile Quenum, who died at age 32 in Paris.
Quenum, creator of the fashion blog “J’ai Perdu Ma Veste,” was a fashion week fixture, and regularly shot for New York magazine’s The Cut, among other outlets, and brands such as Louis Vuitton, Moncler and Adidas. He was also actively involved in the #NoFreePhotos initiative, which kicked off in the fall. Read more about Quenum in @kbsmoke's story on WWD.com. #wwdnews
@verwanggang and @maisonladuree have teamed up on a dessert collab called Vera Wang Pour Ladurée. The collection, which launched this week, features a specialty macaroon, as well as a wedding cake inspired by one of the designer’s gowns. “I could not imagine a more delicate or sophisticated creation to grace any couple’s celebration,” said Wang. #wwdfashion