Lisa Collier Named President of Dockers

Seth Ellison to head European operations in reconfiguration of regional duties.

Lisa Collier has been promoted to president of Levi Strauss & Co.’s Dockers brand and executive vice president of the company in a realignment of executive duties at the San Francisco-based apparel giant.

This story first appeared in the July 19, 2013 issue of WWD.  Subscribe Today.

As Dockers’ leader, Collier succeeds Seth Ellison, who has been promoted to president of Europe. Collier’s previous experience at the company includes work on both the Dockers and Levi’s brands.

Anne Rohosy, most recently president of commercial operations for Europe and the Americas, becomes president of the Americas, adding responsibility for retail for all brands in the region. Roy Bagattini remains president of Asia-Pacific and adds oversight of the Middle East and Africa, effective with the start of Levi’s next fiscal year on Nov. 25.

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In the second quarter ended May 26, when Levi’s reported revenues of $1.1 billion, the Americas accounted for 60.6 percent of sales, or $666 million, while Europe and Asia-Pacific generated 23 percent and 16.4 percent, respectively, or $253 million and $180 million. The Middle East and Africa have been reported as part of Europe but beginning next year will be consolidated into Asia-Pacific’s results.

Ellison, Rohosy and Bagattini continue as executive vice presidents of the firm.

Collier was most recently senior vice president of product development for Levi’s supply chain and previously led merchandising and licensing for the Dockers brand and worked in product development for the Levi’s brand.

“I have been impressed with Lisa’s passion for the Dockers brand and her ability to make things happen,” said Chip Bergh, president and chief executive officer of Levi’s.

Once a more than $1 billion business in its own right, Dockers’ volume has contracted in recent years and generated 12 percent of corporate revenues of $4.61 billion in 2012, or about $550 million. Bergh has said he wants the brand to reclaim its previous peak volume level of about $1.2 billion.

Bergh took note of significant progress with Dockers when the company reported improved second-quarter earnings and sales on July 9, including the brand’s men’s bottoms business in the U.S. Signature Khakis under the brand were “rocking,” he said, and Alpha Khaki was beginning to create a younger audience for the brand.

“We had some cleanup to do when I got here [in September 2011] and we did that,” he told WWD. “And it cost us a bit — we took a step back to take two steps forward.

“We had to bring the old customer back,” he said. “That was first and foremost. Now we’re beginning to build the base. We’re still far away from our $1 billion goal but we’re moving in the right direction.”

He pointed out that Dockers remained “fundamentally a U.S. business” and that it had yet to undergo significant development in the area of direct-to-consumer selling, with most of its stores in the outlet, rather than full-price, format. It has recently benefited from expanded space in J.C. Penney stores, Bergh said.

“We’ve got a five-year glide path in mind for Dockers,” he said.

Levi’s also said that Kelly McGinnis, most recently vice president of global communications for Dell Inc., will join the company on Aug. 5 as chief communications officer. Amber McCasland, who’s filled that role on an interim basis for the past seven months, will resume her role as senior director of corporate affairs upon McGinnis’ arrival.

Collier and McGinnis will report to Bergh, as Ellison, Rohosy and Bagattini continue to do. James Curleigh continues as president of the Levi’s brand, also reporting to Bergh.

The company said earlier this week that Spencer Fleischer, president and cofounder of the private equity firm Friedman Fleischer & Lowe LLC, had been elected a director of Levi’s, expanding the size of the board to 11. He will serve on the audit and finance committees of the board.