Jim Wiggett has been named chief executive officer and a director of Bebe Stores after a six-month tenure as the retailer’s interim ceo.
As ceo of Jackson Hole Group, Wiggett had provided advisory services to Brisbane, Calif.-based Bebe for five years before his interim appointment following the June resignation of Steve Birkhold as ceo. Earlier in his career, Wiggett had served in senior management positions for Macy’s Inc., Charles Schwab Corp. and, most recently, LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton, where he was president and ceo of sephora.com and also worked at DFS Group.
“Since Mr. Wiggett joined as interim chief executive officer in June, we have been extremely pleased with his contributions and the strategic direction of the company,” said Manny Mashouf, non-executive chairman of Bebe. “Jim has made considerable progress in executing our turnaround strategy. We have been impressed with his leadership and results orientation during his interim assignment and are highly confident in his ability to lead the company.”
The company closed its 2B business, including 16 mall-based stores and an e-commerce site, shortly after Wiggett’s promotion to interim ceo. Last month, Bebe reported a net loss from continuing operations of $9 million for the first quarter of fiscal 2015, up from a loss of $7.9 million in the prior-year quarter. Net sales declined 6.5 percent to $109.3 million on a smaller store base and an increase in comparable-store sales of 0.7 percent. The positive comp was the first for the specialty retailer since fiscal 2012.
Earlier this month, Bebe confirmed that it had suffered a cyber attack in the 19 days prior to Thanksgiving Day. Stores in the U.S., Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands had customer data compromised while customers at its Canadian stores and on its e-commerce site at bebe.com did not.