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Loehmann’s Names Chief Operating Officer

Loehmann’s Inc. has named Joseph Melvin chief operating officer, succeeding Robert Glass, who is retiring after more than 15 years with the company.

Loehmann’s Inc. has named Joseph Melvin chief operating officer, succeeding Robert Glass, who is retiring after more than 15 years with the off-price chain.

Melvin becomes second-in-command at Loehmann’s, reporting to Jerry Politzer, chief executive officer. Most recently, Melvin served as president and chief operating officer of Finlay Fine Jewelry Corp., which liquidated. Prior to Finlay, Melvin worked for The May Department Stores Co., which was acquired by Macy’s Inc., and for more than 20 years held top level jobs there including chairman and chief operating officer of the Filene’s unit, as well as chief financial officer and controller at three other divisions.

“Joe’s significant experience in the retail industry, particularly in the areas of finance and operations, will serve Loehmann’s well,” Politzer said.

The 63-unit, $425 million Loehmann’s has recently been receiving financial help from its parent company, Istithmar, to firm up relations with vendors and factors, including close to $10 million last April. Loehmann’s also got some breathing room in December when it secured a three-year, $35 million asset-based revolving credit facility with GE Capital, Corporate Retail Finance. In December 2008, Istithmar also came through with money to help Loehmann’s. These are signs that Istithmar, while selling certain holdings, is willing to support its retail assets to promote turnarounds, with the long-term goal of selling the businesses when their worth increases.