Sigrid Olsen has gotten a management makeover from parent Liz Claiborne Inc. after lackluster performance.
Barry Zelman, president of retail for better and moderate apparel at Claiborne, has taken over as president of Sigrid Olsen and New Retail Concepts. Susanna Moyer, design director for GarfieldMarks and Womyn at GM Design Group, joined the brand as vice president of design.
Although Claiborne did not break out the numbers for the better women's sportswear brand individually, the parent company attributed much of both its 7.4 percent wholesale slip and its 3.5 percent dip in retail comps in the first quarter to Sigrid Olsen product missteps.
Zelman was already in charge of Sigrid Olsen's retail side, and this promotion puts him in charge of wholesale, as well. In that role, he replaced Lydia Gollner, who was hired last May as president of Sigrid Olsen and the discontinued City Unltd. She left last month.
Based in New York, Zelman will work with founder Sigrid Olsen and report to group president Jill Granoff, who — after a shift in group president responsibilities earlier this year — now has full oversight over the brand.
"This is the first time we are actually bringing the retail and the wholesale business together under one leadership team," Granoff said. "We really want to accelerate the growth of the retail businesses and capture the heart of the boomer consumer."
She added that Claiborne is moving the brand's design from Hong Kong to New York.
Zelman joined $4.99 billion Claiborne in 2001 as vice president and general manager of Elisabeth after two decades with companies such as Bloomingdale's, Delta Burke Design, Faded Glory, Members Only, Pierre Cardin and Henry Grethel.
"Barry brings a unique blend of wholesale and retail experience to this role, as well as outstanding leadership and team-building skills," Olsen said in a statement. "In addition, he has a real passion for the brand and an in-depth understanding of the target customer. I feel he is the right partner to help take the Sigrid Olsen business to the next level."
Moyer will continue to teach a Senior Design Concept class at Parsons The New School for Design in Manhattan, where she has been an educator for the last 20 years. Before GM Design Group, Moyer was design director at Kmart, Liz Lange and Hickey Freeman. She also launched her own line, Susanna Moyer, which was carried by Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom and more than 200 specialty stores.
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