By  on November 11, 2004

NEW YORK — In the midst of a federal investigation into its commission policies, Tommy Hilfiger Corp. brought Bob Rosenblatt on board as chief operating officer Wednesday.

Rosenblatt fills the void left by long-time Hilfiger executive Joel Newman, who was executive vice president for finance and operations for the firm. The firm said in July that Newman would retire.

Rosenblatt has also been named group president and chief operating officer of Tommy Hilfiger USA Inc., the firm’s principal operating subsidiary. Newman had also been chief operating officer of the subsidiary.

In his new role, Rosenblatt takes on responsibility for finance, distribution, information technology and e-commerce, as well as several support functions such as legal, facilities and security. He reports to president and chief executive officer David Dyer.

Oversight of the legal area might well be one of the more dynamic aspects of Rosenblatt’s job. Last week, Hilfiger bolstered its legal team, hiring former Manhattan U.S. Attorney Mary Jo White, now a partner at Debevoise & Plimpton, as lead counsel.

At that time, the firm said in a written statement that the investigation “is focused on the appropriateness of the commission rate paid by the company’s subsidiaries to Tommy Hilfiger (Eastern Hemisphere) Ltd., as well as other related tax matters, although there can be no assurance that the scope of the investigation will not be expanded.’’

Most recently, Rosenblatt was president of the U.S. division of the Home Shopping Network. He also spent 14 years in various operating and financial positions at Bloomingdale’s.

“Bob is a proven leader who will bring important operational and financial skills to our management team,” Dyer said in a statement. “His diverse and accomplished background will make him a strong asset to Tommy Hilfiger.”

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