The Children’s Place is building up its senior team to fuel new strategies being orchestrated by president and chief executive officer Jane Elfers, who took the reins in January.
Next month, Natalie Levy joins the chain as senior vice president of merchandising. She was Ann Taylor’s senior vice president and general merchandise manager, and before that held the same title at Lord & Taylor, overseeing proprietary brands for women’s sportswear, accessories, men’s and children’s.
Dina Sweeney, a 26-year veteran of The Children’s Place, has become senior vice president of outlets, a new position. She previously held the merchandising role.
Barrie Scardina has been named senior vice president of planning and allocation, and was previously Liz Claiborne’s vice president of retail operations. Scardina succeeds Richard Flaks, who left in August.
Last month, Larry McClure was named senior vice president of human resources, replacing Linda Martin, who resigned.
“With these appointments, the senior team is largely in place, with a couple of slots yet to be filled,” Elfers said Friday.
“In March, we announced that the company is focused on five key initiatives that we expect will drive sales and profit for 2010 and beyond,” she continued. “Two of these initiatives — strengthening the merchandise and optimizing inventory management — are critical to our success. Most of the merchandising changes will be in effect for the latter half of 2011.”
Elfers, who, before joining The Children’s Place, was president and ceo of Lord & Taylor, also said there is a “tremendous opportunity to improve our outlet experience” with accelerated store openings in value centers. The other initiatives call for sharpening the marketing message and e-commerce growth.
The $1.6 billion Children’s Place focuses on newborns to 12-year-olds with merchandise under its own label and has 950 stores in the U.S., Canada and Puerto Rico, including 129 outlets, and a Web site. Since the company’s announcement Dec. 11 that Elfers would join as president and ceo, the stock price has increased 68.4 percent, closing at $49.06 on Friday, and market capitalization has grown by $550 million to $1.35 billion. During that same period, the S&P Retail Index, which ended the week at 494.59, has grown 18.8 percent.
“Azzedine has been one of the biggest influences in my life. He has always been such a strong, loving, fatherly figure to me. I call him Papa. His designs are indescribably unique, they are pieces of art. He knew how to make the female form look its loveliest. I have so many memories of him; my favorite might be during my first show with him in Paris. He liked me and he wanted to help me get more work. He called all his friends at Kenzo and Comme des Garcons, and asked them to book me. They said, ‘But she can’t walk!’ And he said, ‘but she has such a great ass!' His friendship and support has been the great privilege of my career. I can't imagine life without him. Repose en paix mon Papa.” - @stephanieseymour tells @wwd. #wwdfashion (📷: @steveeichner) #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa, flanked by two of his closest friends, models Stephanie Seymour and Naomi Campbell.
He designed Seymour’s dress for her 1995 wedding to Peter Brant, and treated Campbell (who famously called him Papa), like a daughter. For more on the legendary designer, tap the link in bio. #wwdfashion #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa's “I-did-it-my-way” ethos stood out starkly at a time when brands are experimenting with consumer-facing fashion shows, coed formats and trans-seasonal collections – anything to perk up lackluster sales of ready-to-wear in an age of Insta-everything. “It’s not creation anymore. This becomes a purely industrial approach,” the late designer told WWD in an interview last year. “But anyway, the rhythm of collections is so stupid. It’s unsustainable. There are too many collections.” Read more about the iconic designer’s life and work on wwd.com, link in bio. #wwdfashion #azzedinealaia (📷: @WWD Archive, 1986) #alaia
Sneaker reselling app @goat’s latest exhibit, "The Greatest: New York," tells the story of New York's sneaker culture. To celebrate the exhibit, an intimate crowd gathered on Thursday night at the pop-up gallery space, located at Platform in Culver City, to hear guest speaker and illustrator @esymai talk about her own rise in streetwear and women in the business. "For me I'm just someone who is creative. I like to create things," said Chang. #wwdfashion
Azzedine Alaïa, one of the most iconic couturiers of the modern era whose body-con designs defined Eighties fashion, has died in Paris. The diminutive Tunisian-born designer, known for his structured knitted dresses with fitted waists and impeccably cut, figure-hugging second skin silhouettes was deeply admired by his peers, and counted supermodel Naomi Campbell - his adoptive daughter - among his inner circle, one of a gang of glamazons including Farida Khelfa, Carla Bruni and Stephanie Seymour who became ambassadors of his style. (📷: Alexandre Guirkinger) #wwdblast