MONEY MEN: PPR remunerated its top executives handsomely last year. According to documents published last week on the French retail and luxury group’s Web site, its former chief executive Serge Weinberg, who was replaced last month by François-Henri Pinault, took home slightly over 3 million euros, or $3.9 million at current exchange, in pay last year, up from 1.9 million euros, or $2.5 million, the year before. Weinberg also was granted 50,000 stock options at 85.57 euros, or $110.38, a share. Meanwhile, Gucci Group’s chief, Robert Polet, who joined the company in July, earned 1.8 million euros, or $2.3 million, last year, including a 1.2 million euro, or $1.5 million, bonus. Polet got 25,000 stock options at 84.17 euros, or $108.55, a share.
— Robert Murphy
JUST TAPPED: Gianni Versace has tapped Isabelle Harvie-Watt Clavarino as worldwide director of public relations and communications. Harvie-Watt Clavarino has spent the last 14 years working at Giorgio Armani SpA, working her way up to director of international relations. She will start at Versace May 2. Harvie-Watt Clavarino replaces Jason Weisenfeld, who recently relocated to New York and is starting a marketing and communications firm with former Saks Fifth Avenue executive Jaqui Lividini. Versace said in a statement that this appointment “completes the plan of managerial reorganization” at the company.
— Amanda Kaiser
ZERUNIAN JOINS JENSEN: George Jensen has named Nadia Zerunian as international creative and artistic director, a new position. Zerunian, 39, was formally design and product development director of Calvin Klein Watches and Jewelry. At George Jensen she will be in charge of design strategy and oversee the company’s freelance designers. She will begin work on June 1, and report directly to Hans-Kristian Hoejsgaard, president and chief executive officer of George Jensen. “Our ambition is to grow into an international luxury goods company, around the core of our jewelry and watch business,” Hoejsgaard told WWD in a telephone interview. “Nadia’s position is very senior and an integral part of the overall strategy.”
— Samantha Conti
LAURA ASHLEY DRESSES DOWN: The British fashion-to-furniture retailer Laura Ashley will cut its U.K. fashion offering by a third, in response to an 11.4 percent sales slump in the 52 weeks ended Jan. 29. The retail group, known best for its floral fabrics, saw sales drop to 238.9 million pounds, or $449.1 million at current exchange, from 283.5 million pounds, or $533 million.
This story first appeared in the April 18, 2005 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
“Retail conditions in the U.K. remain difficult,” said Lillian Tan, chief executive officer of the company, in a statement. “Our challenge is to enhance further the product offering in this increasingly competitive marketplace.” Profits rose to 3.5 million pounds, or $6.6 million, from 2 million pounds, or $3.8 million, the prior year, due to cost cutting across the business. The retailer plans to increase its focus on home furnishing while reducing its U.K. clothing division to 14 percent of total sales by next year, down from the present 22 percent and from 28 percent last year.
— Ellen Burney