Steve Birkhold, former chief executive officer at Lacoste North America and Diesel USA, has been named ceo. He takes over the top job from Manny Mashouf, founder, chairman and ceo, who will become non-executive chairman. The 250-door chain said it was looking for a new leader in October.
“We are eager to continue our journey toward becoming a global, omnichannel company,” Mashouf said. “Steve will help us develop and execute strategies to reach that goal by growing our brand, expanding our distribution channels and evolving our customer experience.”
Birkhold became head of Lacoste North America in 2010 and, in addition to his time at Diesel, worked at VF Corp. and May Department Stores Co. earlier in his career.
“I look forward to positioning Bebe for the dynamic changes taking place in our industry — and for the tremendous opportunities that lie ahead for the company,” Birkhold said. “I view my role as helping to keep the brand true to its heritage of style and sensuality, keeping relevant to both existing and potential new consumers….”
Birkhold clearly has his work cut out for him.
Bebe said sales in its fiscal second quarter ended Dec. 29 dropped 11.7 percent to $124.6 million. Comparable-store sales fell 10.5 percent, driven by a 15 percent decline in comp-store traffic.
The retailer said its average inventory per square foot at the end of the quarter was up 27.5 percent versus a year earlier. This increase reflects the shift New Year’s Eve into fiscal January, efforts to elevate the retailer’s product offerings, more spring receipts and initiatives to localize assortments.
Bebe said its second-quarter adjusted loss would fall at or below the lower end of its previous guidance of 1 cent a share.
Shares of the firm fell 5.5 percent to $3.78.
Also on Thursday, Devanlay named Francis Pierrel ceo of its U.S. division to succeed Birkhold. Pierrel was previously ceo of Devanlay France but has extensive knowledge of the U.S. market, having spent eight years as vice president of retail for Diesel USA Inc.
He previously worked at Diesel’s Italian headquarters, having begun his career at Bruce Field and Esprit de Corp. in France, Devanlay said.
As one of the most recognizable models in the world, Christy Turlington Burns has an insider’s view of the fashion industry and the allegations of sexual harassment swirling around it. “I can say that harassment and mistreatment have always been widely known and tolerated in the industry. The industry is surrounded by predators who thrive on the constant rejection and loneliness so many of us have experiences at some point in our careers,” Turlington told WWD, along with her suggestions for how the modeling world should protect younger women and men. Read more on WWD.com. Link in bio. (📷: Tony Palmieri) #wwdnews
@asics America has tapped a new brand ambassador: famed DJ/record producer @steveaoki. This initiative is intended to set the tone for the new brand identity and philosophy and will include partnerships with influencers and in-store and off-line activations that will continue into next year. This is Asics’ most significant marketing effort in two decades, and is expected to attract younger consumers to the brand. #wwdfashion
24-year-old Jean Prounis is redefining the rules of jewelry. Formerly a studio assistant to Jemima Kirke and a design apprentice at Ghuran, she focuses on handcrafted subtleties and ancient goldsmithing techniques. “There was a really sterile feel in the environment and I wanted to have jewelry with character that shapes how you wear it everyday,” Prounis said. Each piece is hand made in New York, either by Prounis or three other jewelers in the district. #wwdfashion
“These collections continue to build on that vision, empowering differently abled adults to express themselves through fashion,” said @tommyhilfiger of his line of adaptive apparel, which launches today. The line consists of 37 men’s and 34 women’s styles based upon the pieces from the spring Tommy Hilfiger sportswear collection. #wwdnews
“Stranger Things” is getting a new cast member for season 2. Meet @sadiesink_, the 15-year-old who will be joining the Netflix series for its new season. You may recognize her from “The Glass Castle” with Brie Larson and Woody Harrelson, but the Texas native’s next role goes in an entirely different direction. She describes her character, Max, as “a rough and tumble skater girl [who] becomes friends with the boys at school.” The second season debuts on October 27. (📷: @jgreenery) #wwdeye
Amid the Harvey Weinstein controversy, there’s another sector that’s being put under the spotlight for sexual abuse: the modeling industry. While rumors about abuse and sexual harassment of female and male models — and the photographers, agents and others who perpetrated it — have circulated within the fashion world for years, model @cameronrussell started posting stories from models on Instagram last week about abusive situations they’ve encountered — from sexual harassment and molestation to attempted rape. Over 75 have weighed in so far. Read more on WWD.com. Link in bio. #wwdnews
To celebrate its 16th anniversary, @dylanscandybar tapped designers and celebrities to create mosaics out of candy. The mosaics will be auctioned off to support the philanthropic cause of each participant’s choice. Pictured here is the mural created by @aliceandolivia's Stacey Bendet. For a first look at some of the other artwork being unveiled tonight, go to WWD.com. #wwdeye
The annual Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic in Pacific Palisades this weekend drew Kate Hudson, Tracee Ellis Ross, Laura Dern and more. See pictures of the star-studded event on WWD.com. (📷: @chelsealaurenla) #wwdeye
In his new book “Hollywood Royale,” Andy Warhol’s Protégé Matthew Rolston celebrates the Eighties revival of Hollywood glamour. Featuring more than 100 portraits taken by Rolston from 1977 to 1993, the book contains photos of icons like Michael Jackson, Cyndi Lauper, and @drewbarrymore, pictured here in 1991. “Hollywood Royale,” out today, will be accompanied by an exhibition opening at Los Angeles’ Fahey/Klein Gallery on March 1. #wwdeye