Marty Staff’s honeymoon period with Dov Charney at American Apparel Inc. has ended in a quick, if amicable, divorce.
Staff, who joined the company as chief business development officer in March, exited the role on Wednesday. Staff’s high-profile hiring seven months ago was aimed at jump-starting sales at the beleaguered company. He spearheaded programs that added new shop-in-shops in department stores in France and the U.K., and was involved in ongoing talks with Bloomingdale’s to add American Apparel shops here in the U.S.
“Dov is a one-man band, and I don’t think I realized how singular that vision is,” said Staff of Charney, who is founder, chairman and chief executive officer of American Apparel. “When I joined, I don’t think I realized how actively Dov manages every part of the company — from design to IT to marketing to finance. All roads lead through Dov. No judgment on that, but I think I was used to something more collaborative.”
Staff was previously president and ceo of JA Apparel Corp., owner of the Joseph Abboud brand. Earlier in his career, Staff was president and ceo of Hugo Boss Fashions Inc., the U.S. arm of Hugo Boss.
Staff said he has been in talks with several private equity players about potential investments in fashion and apparel companies. “I would say there are three groups that I’ve been speaking with on a pretty constant basis,” he said. “If I had my dream, I would replicate the Joseph Abboud deal and find a bona fide financial partner to acquire an undervalued brand.”
Staff was instrumental in putting together the 2004 acquisition of JA Apparel Corp. for $73 million by private equity firm J.W. Childs Associates.
Reached by phone, Charney declined to elaborate on the circumstances of Staff’s departure. In a statement, he noted: “Marty is one of the most experienced and capable professionals in our business, and his contributions to American Apparel have been very substantial. Marty is truly a dynamic figure in our industry, and I wish him all the best as he moves to the next chapter of his iconic career.”
Apart from Staff’s exit, Charney has his hands full raising additional financing for debt-laden American Apparel. According to sources, the company remains in talks with Colbeck Capital Management LLP, an investment firm affiliated with Ron Burkle’s Yucaipa Cos., on raising about $90 million in new financing. Senior American Apparel executives were in New York this week, meeting with the investment group to hammer out details of the potential deal, which would buy American Apparel more breathing room on its burdensome debt load with Bank of America and Lion Capital.
However, a source said the terms offered by the Burkle group are not financially attractive, which could scuttle the deal.
There'll be no rest for those headed to Europe for men's, as Paris just closed the gap with Milan. According to a provisional calendar released by the Chambre Syndicale, Paris Men's Week will now open a day earlier on January 16. See new highlights on the official lineup on WWD.com. #wwdnews #wwdfashion (📷: @kukukuba)
BREAKING: Jonathan Saunders is leaving @DVF. The designer has resigned from his position as chief creative officer of Diane von Furstenberg, the company said in a statement on Friday. At the time of his hire, von Furstenberg said Saunders’ arrival symbolized and facilitated her stepping back from the day-to-day duties that occupy the work of a full-time creative director. The British designer joined DVF in May 2016 and was in charge of all product categories. #wwdnews
For @versace_official’s spring ad campaign, the brand emphasized the archival prints from the spring tribute collection dedicated to the late Gianni Versace. Closing out the show were five of Gianni’s favorite models: Cindy, Naomi, Carla, Helena, and Claudia. Bowing on December 18, the new campaign is yet another tribute to supermodel-dom as the images by Steven Meisel are fronted by @iamnaomicampbell, @cturlington, @gisele and more. #wwdfashion
Four-time Oscar-nominated actress Annette Bening has been waiting 20 years to play Gloria Graham in "Film Stars Don't Die in Liverpool," which will be released on December 29. The movie about Graham – a Hollywood star known for her controversial relationship with a younger Englishman named Peter Turner – is based off a memoir Turned wrote. "She felt vulnerable to him, because she loved him, she really did love him. And anyone that we really truly are in love with, we re vulnerable to in a very deep way," said Bening. Read our full interview with the modern icon of an actress on WWD.com. #wwdeye (📷: @ninebagatelles; Styled by @cristinaehrlich)
The crisp white button down: a staple that can be dressed up or down and accessorized throughout the decades. Here, on a Art Basel-goer in 2017 on the left and on the iconic Audrey Hepburn in “Roman Holiday” in 1953 on the right. #tbt #wwdfashion (📷: Andrew Morales)
Known for her work with @victoriassecret, 25-year-old model @georgiafowler is raising her profile in Hollywood. Fowler stars in @vincecamuto’s holiday campaign, which launched in partnership with “Pitch Perfect 3.” “Almost every shoot with Vince Camuto, I’ve had to face a fear…It was definitely a challenge. I’m so grateful for it, though. I’ve always wanted to be a pop star, so that was the perfect chance,” Fowler said. Head to WWD.com to read about Fowler’s experience modeling, including at the #VSFashionShow, and her relationship with Nick Jonas. #wwdeye (📷: @jilliansollazzo)
EXCLUSIVE: Huda Kattan just became the first beauty influencer to land a major beauty deal. Kattan's business, @hudabeauty, has received a minority investment from private equity firm TSG Consumer Partners. The brand, which industry sources say is on track to do $200 million in retail sales for 2017, will receive support on product, retail and geographic expansion through the deal. Get all the details on the deal and read @_a_collins' interview with Kattan on WWD.com. Link in bio. (📷: @jgreenery) #wwdbeauty #wwdnews
Peruvian model @juanaburga_official – who is known for walking the runways of @rodarte, @viviennewestwood and @torybuch – is making the move to the big screen with drama “Los Últimos.” The film premiered in Argentina in November and arrives in the U.S. and Europe in 2018. On making the switch from modeling to acting, Burga told WWD: “It’s a completely different thing – a lot of people think it’s similar or try to connect things, especially like getting used to the camera or being looked at all the time or playing these different characrers, but film is a completely different story.” #wwdeye (📷: @jgreenery)
London’s newly opened @designmuseum will look back on the life and work of Azzedine Alaïa in a show that the designer helped to curate before he died of heart failure last month. The retrospective, which Alaïa had worked on with Mark Wilson, chief curator of the @groningermuseum, will look at the impact of his work worldwide. The show, “Azzedine Alaïa: The Couturier,” will run from May 10 to October 7. Read more about the exhibit on WWD.com #wwdnews #wwdfashion (📷: @zefashioninsider)