NEW YORK — Victoria & Co. chief executive officer Jackie Corso has been named ceo of the handbag and small leather goods division at parent company Jones Apparel Group.
She takes over the responsibilities of Bruce Makowsky, who had been president of Nine West accessories. Makowsky has left the company, according to a company spokesman.
Separately on Tuesday, Credit Suisse First Boston downgraded Jones’ stock to "neutral" from "outperform" based on questions about whether Jones will be able to retain its various licenses from Polo Ralph Lauren or find suitable vehicles to make up sales and profits.
With this expanded position, Corso, who also remains ceo at Victoria, now will be overseeing all of the handbag and jewelry operations at Jones. She will continue to report to Rhonda Brown, president and chief executive officer of the Jones footwear, accessories and retail group.
Peter Boneparth, president and ceo at Jones Apparel Group, said in a statement: "This is a natural progression for Jackie. By having her focused on both the costume jewelry and small leather goods division, we will be better positioned to leverage our powerful brands and to maximize their respective cross-selling opportunities."
In the most recent fourth quarter, Jones’ footwear and accessories division reported a 10.8 percent drop in sales at wholesale to $197.8 million, while profits fell 4.7 percent to $24.6 million. Overall company revenues grew 7.8 percent to $964.5 million, while profits surged 64.9 percent to $51.6 million in the quarter.
Corso joined Victoria & Co. in November from Lerner New York, where she was an executive vice president. In her role at Victoria, she oversees all of the company’s jewelry brands, which include Judith Jack, Napier, Nine West, Enzo Angiolini and Bijoux Givenchy, as well as the licensed Tommy Hilfiger line.
The CSFB report lowered the 12-month target price for Jones stock to $30 a share from $36. Shares closed at $27.11, down 32 cents, or 1.2 percent, in New York Stock Exchange trading on Tuesday.
"We believe that Jones’ current stock price is discounting a loss of the Lauren license, but not the possible loss of the Polo Jeans license," wrote analyst Dennis Rosenberg in a research note.The dilemma for Jones, the note said, is that attempting to replace Lauren volume with a Calvin Klein women’s wear license, the acquisition of Tommy Hilfiger or both would put it in violation of its Polo Jeans license, which in 2002 generated about $415 million in sales, and operating profits of between $65 million and $70 million.
CSFB estimated that the loss of the Lauren license would deplete Jones’ 2004 earnings by 52 cents a share. By comparison, a doubling of the current royalty rate on Lauren, to 12 percent, would extract 16 cents a share from 2004 EPS.
“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
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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