NEW YORK — Kellwood Co. on Wednesday said it has named Laura Capponi-Huffman to the new post of vice president of Kellwood Licensing.

This move comes while the St. Louis-based company is aggressively pursuing new licensed brands. Last year, Kellwood signed a long-term deal to manufacture Izod women’s apparel, and the company in recent months has also landed the XOXO license for sportswear, dresses and intimate apparel.

As reported, Kellwood is also said to be a front-runner in the race to land the CK Calvin Klein better women’s sportswear license, for which Phillips-Van Heusen Corp. has said it’s seeking a partner. PVH also owns the Izod brand.

Capponi-Huffman, who started May 19, is based in New York and reports to Stephen L. Ruzow, president of Kellwood women’s wear. She last served as vice president of international marketing and distribution at Donna Karan International.

She’s also no stranger to the Calvin Klein business — before joining DKI, she was director of international licensing and distribution at Warnaco Group Inc.’s Calvin Klein underwear and accessories for men division.

Ruzow said in a statement that Capponi-Huffman will be responsible for “managing our intensified efforts to expand our company into every segment of fashion.”

Kellwood last year recorded net earnings of $42 million on sales of $2.2 billion.

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