Lew Frankfort’s Role at Coach Inc. Shifts to Part-time

The changes, according to the SEC filing, don’t imply a change in Frankfort’s role as executive chairman.

NEW YORK — Lew Frankfort’s role as executive chairman of Coach Inc. is moving to part-time from full-time and his salary to $500,000 from $1.5 million.

This story first appeared in the July 3, 2014 issue of WWD.  Subscribe Today.

In a disclosure with the Securities and Exchange Commission Wednesday, Coach said Frankfort, who also served as the company’s chief executive officer from 1995 until earlier this year, began working in a part-time capacity on Tuesday. As amended, the revised contract will be in force until Coach’s annual stockholders meeting, scheduled for Nov. 6.

Under the terms of the amended agreement, Frankfort won’t be eligible for either bonus or equity compensation.

The changes, according to the filing, don’t imply a change in Frankfort’s role as chairman. They were described as “voluntary” and not in any way implying “a termination without cause or [resignation for] a good reason” as defined by the original contract signed in 2003.

Under terms of his new deal, Frankfort is expected “to provide a level of bona-fide services…that is more than 20 percent of the average level” provided over the last 36 months. The filing’s only reference to his retirement is that it is to come at a “to-be-agreed upon” date.

The former Coach ceo, who was succeeded by Victor Luis in January, is unlikely to have difficulty keeping busy. He made a strategic investment in spin club operator Flywheel Sports in 2012 and also has had investments in J Brand, BodyArmor sports drinks and, according to reports, Tequila Avión.

Meanwhile, Luis has had a challenging first year as ceo. At an investor conference last month, the New York-based accessories firm revealed plans to close 70 full-price stores and revamp its outlet business as it confronts double-digit declines in revenues and same-store sales this year. In the nine months through March 29, net income fell 13.2 percent to $706.1 million, while sales were down 4.7 percent to $3.67 billion.