NEW YORK — Another chapter is beginning for Anne Klein.
Liz Fraser has been named chief executive officer of the company, effective immediately.
Since 2012, Fraser has been president of Marc by Marc Jacobs, where she was responsible for the $500 million multicategory business and also sat on the company’s executive committee. She was with Marc Jacobs Inc., a division of LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton, for more than 15 years. As reported, Marc Jacobs Inc. has ceased production of the Marc by Marc Jacobs label and assimilated that collection’s product range and price points into the signature Marc Jacobs collection. Earlier, she held various posts in merchandising and sourcing, including vice president, sourcing and manufacturing, at Esprit, in San Francisco, and as vice president, sourcing, at Escada, in Hong Kong.
At Anne Klein, Fraser will oversee the company’s business operations and spearhead its strategy. Anne Klein is a unit of Nine West Holdings, a portfolio company of private-equity firm Sycamore Partners.
Peggy Eskenasi, executive chairman of Anne Klein, called Fraser “an experienced senior executive with global business expertise.” She said, “Given her proven track record of driving growth in the fashion industry, we believe she will be an invaluable resource as we work to return Anne Klein to its celebrated position as a leader in American women’s fashion.”
In related moves, Sharon Lombardo, previously vice president of design of ready-to-wear, fashion accessories and footwear at Kate Spade, has joined the firm as creative director. Beth Kent has been tapped as senior vice president of licensing and international sales at Anne Klein. Among her previous roles were executive vice president of international at Tommy Hilfiger and director of commercial operations at Polo Ralph Lauren in South America. Both Lombardo and Kent report to Fraser, who reports to the board of Nine West Holdings.
“There are few brands with the stature and heritage of Anne Klein, and I believe in the team we are building and our new strategy to strengthen the business,” added Eskenasi.
Anne Klein, a sportswear label that was launched in 1968, has appeared to have nine lives. The brand, whose sophisticated sportswear catered to the growing legions of successful working women, was acquired by the former Jones Apparel Group in 2003 as part of its purchase of Kasper A.S.L. Once considered one of America’s most iconic sportswear brands, it went through multiple identity crises after Anne Klein’s death, in 1974, and just as many designers. Among them were Donna Karan, Louis Dell’Olio, Richard Tyler, Patrick Robinson, Isabel Toledo, Ken Kaufman and Isaac Franco, Charles Nolan, and Michael Smaldone.