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.
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)
@Pharrell and his wife Helen Lasichanh were among the stars that came out to celebrate @rimowa’s first pop-up concept shop. The space, which is located on Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills, draws inspiration from airport luggage carousels and lounge areas – and features the company’s luggage and accessories. If the pop-up is successful it could pave the way for addition temporary shops throughout the world. #wwdfashion (📷: Owen Kolasinski/BFA)
@carineroitfeld celebrated @crfashionbook’s first calendar last night with a dinner party at Spring Place in Manhattan. Photographed by @stevenkleinstudio, the calendar takes on a fitness theme and features @joansmalls, @gigihadid, @danielle_herrington_ – pictured here – and more. “[Carine Roitfeld] wanted me to feel sexy and she wanted me to be myself and feel it out on my own and do what I felt was right,” said Herrington, aka Miss October. #wwdeye
@saintrecords and @virgilabloh last night at @americanexpress’ “A Night With Success Makers” event. “I always bring it back to community because without that I wouldn’t have the courage,” said Knowles when asked how she has gotten where she is now. Read more highlights from their conversation on WWD.com. #wwdeye (📷: @lizdoupnik)
This Just In: Industry sources have told WWD that Anastasia Soare is rumored to be considering selling her beauty business, @anastasiabeverlyhills. According to those sources, Soare has tapped investment bank Imperial Capital to explore sale options for her eponymous beauty brand –– and with at least $340 million in net sales, this would be a big deal. Put in context of other recent transactions for makeup companies, Soare’s price tag could be in the billions if she were to sell the whole thing. #wwdnews #wwdbeauty (📷: @clint_spaulding)
@assouline’s latest book, “The Spirit of Bentley: Be Extraordinary” captures the adventurous attitudes and opulent lifestyles of @bentleymotors’ most creative owners and enthusiasts throughout the U.K. The 292-page hardcover has a section dedicated to showing its team of skilled artisans and photos of its most colorful owners, from George Bamford to designer @alicetemperley, pictured here by Aline Coquelle. #wwdeye
@google released its report on the most popular search terms this year. For fashion brands, the list was led by @gucci, the luxury brand that stunned the market last October when it pledged to stop using fur. Runner ups were @supremenewyork and @fashionnova, along with more established brands like @louisvuitton, @chanelofficial and @ysl. #wwdfashion (📷: @aitorrosasphoto)
In yet another fashion show shuffle, @elleryland is moving its show in sync with the Paris couture calendar — though the brand is still keeping one foot on the city’s ready-to-wear schedule. Their runway show in January will coincide with the launch of a new strategy: designing two main collections each year instead of four, which will then be released in four drops. “As we all know, the system needs to change. We need to show sooner to give time back to artisans and designers to do what they do best — create,” said founder Kym Ellery. #wwdnews #wwdfashion (📷: @kukukuba)
@maxmara’s classic 101801 coat was the cornerstone of its pre-fall 2018 collection. The design team expanded the traditional double-breasted, kimono-sleeved style into a trapeze coat, lean belted styles and a peacoat and presented them in monochromatic looks – like the camel one pictured here. #wwdfashion #prefall18 (📷: George Chinsee)