Sources say a handful of high-profile, seasoned fashion executives have been in and out of the Nautica corporate suite here in recent weeks vying for a top post, probably president. Among them is Denise Seegal, president and chief executive officer of Sweetface Fashion Co., the holding company for the JLo by Jennifer Lopez clothing line.
Robert J. Wichser, former president and ceo of JA Apparel Corp. and currently a free agent, also has interviewed at Nautica, a source said. Wichser was forced out of JA Apparel after a change in ownership, and once served as president and chief operating officer of GFT Men’s, GFT Women’s Imports, Joseph Abboud and Valentino.
Peter Corritori, who has held jobs in the highest ranks at Florsheim Group, Calvin Klein Kids and Gant USA, also is reportedly a candidate. He left Calvin Klein Kids about a month ago and is available for hire.
Legal entanglements, including contractual obligations for certain candidates, are stalling a decision, one retail source said.
Other apparel executives have been contacted, including Jim Lewis, former Levi Strauss executive and one-time group president at Liz Claiborne.
Nautica was purchased by VF Corp. last year, which removed Harvey Sanders and elevated David Chu, Nautica co-founder, to ceo. For months, Nautica has been on the prowl for a president. Chu’s contract expires at the end of 2005, and whoever is president would likely step up to ceo.
Officials at Nautica and the rumored candidates could not be reached for comment.
Nautica wants to launch women’s sportswear, which is Seegal’s strong suit, while the other candidates are more associated with men’s wear and other categories.
Eric Wiseman, chairman of VF’s sportswear and intimate apparel coalition, said last year that Nautica women’s sportswear would bow in 2005 at the earliest. Wiseman, who has been playing a big role at Nautica and who is very involved in the interviewing process, is on vacation and could not be reached for comment.
Prior to joining Sweetface, Seegal was president of Liz Claiborne Inc., president of the CK women’s and men’s divisions at Calvin Klein Inc. and was the founding president of DKNY. She was also with Ralph Lauren Womenswear, where for five years she was executive vice president in charge of five divisions. She began her career at Bloomingdale’s, where she rose to group merchandise manager in charge of designer sportswear.Since joining Sweetface in June 2002, Seegal has been on a tear, adding licenses and categories and transforming the label into a 360-degree brand.
“Denise has been prancing in and out of the Nautica offices for the last couple of weeks,” said a source. “She’s a talented, well-liked executive in the industry and is a great representative for any fashion brand.”
@kering_official is spinning off its stake in puma in an effort to focus on its luxury brands, the brand operator announced yesterday. “We are proud to have supported the turnaround of Puma, which now has unrivaled capabilities to take full advantage of the specific dynamics of its global markets and is poised to achieve substantial growth,” said François-Henri Pinault, Kering’s chief executive officer and chairman. Artémis will become a “long-term strategic shareholder” of Puma with a 29 percent stake. #wwdnews #wwdfashion (📷: @jilliansollazzo)
The fashion world mourns for celebrated street style photographer, Nabile Quenum, who died at age 32 in Paris.
Quenum, creator of the fashion blog “J’ai Perdu Ma Veste,” was a fashion week fixture, and regularly shot for New York magazine’s The Cut, among other outlets, and brands such as Louis Vuitton, Moncler and Adidas. He was also actively involved in the #NoFreePhotos initiative, which kicked off in the fall. Read more about Quenum in @kbsmoke's story on WWD.com. #wwdnews
@verwanggang and @maisonladuree have teamed up on a dessert collab called Vera Wang Pour Ladurée. The collection, which launched this week, features a specialty macaroon, as well as a wedding cake inspired by one of the designer’s gowns. “I could not imagine a more delicate or sophisticated creation to grace any couple’s celebration,” said Wang. #wwdfashion
“I’m Russian and I love to use all these little tricks that I got from my grandma or my mom. We didn’t have a lot of money for creams or anything like that so we would use a garden as a beauty treatment regime. We’d put cucumber in the fridge and do a cucumber mask,” says model @irinashayk on one of her beauty hacks. WWD asked celebs what their go-to self-care rituals are. See what Naomie Harris, Freida Pinto and more said on WWD.com. #wwdeye #wwdbeauty (📷: @zefashioninsider)
Exclusive: @viktorandrolf are teaming up with @Zalando on a collection made from leftover clothing. The lineup, which lands at the retailer February 1, includes 17 pieces adorned with sliced up and repurposed overstock from the retailer’s private label collection. Pictured here is a look from the collection –– see more on WWD.com. #wwdfashion #wwdnews
@duewestnyc is the newest bar joining the collection of intimate neighborhood-focused spaces in the West Village. The cocktail menu, which includes bitters and syrups made in-house, offers a “Build Your Own Old-Fashioned” – like the one pictured here – where guests can choose from a list of spirits and unexpected sugars and bitters. #wwdeye
Spotted at last night’s National Board of Review gala in NYC: Angelina Jolie. Jolie – along with Meryl Streep, @lupitanyongo and more – continued the all-black dress code from Sunday’s Golden Globes. #wwdeye (📷: @lexieblacklock)