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In a shake-up at Frederick’s of Hollywood Group Inc., Linda LoRe, the firm’s longtime president, will resign as of Sept. 2 and also will leave the board.
LoRe will continue her employment at FOH through Jan. 20, as she hands over her duties to senior members of the company’s current management team, led by chairman and chief executive officer Thomas Lynch.
The announcement follows a senior staff meeting Wednesday at the FOH offices in Hollywood, where Lynch stated, “I would like to thank Linda for her strong leadership and tireless service to the company for more than 12 years. We wish her the best of luck and success in her future endeavors.”
Lynch has been a member of the company’s board since the completion of its merger in January 2008 with FOH Holdings Inc., the parent company of Frederick’s of Hollywood. He was appointed ceo of FOH in February 2009, and added the post of chairman in May 2009. Lynch was formerly ceo of Fursa Alternative Strategies, one of Frederick’s principal shareholders.
LoRe, who was named president of FOH’s retail operation in February 2009, could not be reached.
Her departure comes as Frederick’s continues to struggle in the face of competition from Victoria’s Secret. In the quarter ended April 30, net losses totaled $387,000 compared with profits of $350,000 a year earlier, while sales fell 13.1 percent to $32.6 million from $36.9 million. The declines came on the back of several years of losses and falling sales, with net losses of $21.2 million on sales of $176.3 million in the year ended July 31, 2009.
LoRe joined FOH in June 1999 as president and ceo. Before that, she was a key figure in the world of master branding, beauty and fragrance, and served as president and ceo of Giorgio Beverly Hills. LoRe is recognized in the beauty industry for the successful fragrance launches of the women’s scents Giorgio, Red, Wings, Ocean Dream and Hugo Woman, and the Hugo by Hugo Boss men’s fragrance. Over the years at FOH, LoRe translated her beauty and fragrance expertise to FOH’s bath and body products, as well as fragrances, areas in which she had specialized at the Procter & Gamble-owned Giorgio.
Regarding LoRe’s departure, the company stated that a description of the terms of her separation agreement with the company and the payments and benefits to be provided will be contained in an 8-K report to be filed soon.
Looking back at FOH, the company has had its share of changes.
In February 2008, FOH Holdings merged with Movie Star Inc., a maker of sleepwear. The union of the two intimate apparel powerhouses — Frederick’s, a $220 million retail business, and Movie Star, a $51 million manufacturer —had been in the works since December 2006. Retail expansion had been a priority since the FOH-Movie Star merger, but FOH sold its wholesale business in October 2010 to Dolce Vita Intimates LLC, a private innerwear firm.
Among FOH’s newest developments is its first foray in the Mideast with a flagship store in Abu Dhabi in July. The licensing venture with Safeer Establishment, a subsidiary of Emirates Associated Business Group, opens the door for 10 or more Frederick’s stores in six countries in the Gulf region by 2014, three of which will be in the United Arab Emirates, including Dubai and Bahrain.