“At Ralph Lauren, I see expansive opportunity. To grow, we’re exploring how to deliver state-of-the-art digital experiences at every point in a consumer’s shopping journey.”That was written by the company’s new president and chief executive officer Patrice Louvet, posted Monday on LinkedIn as a blog post titled “Why I Took the CEO Job at Ralph Lauren Corporation.”Louvet, who spent 28 years at Procter & Gamble, wrote about entering the Ralph Lauren store 20 years ago on the Place de la Madeleine in Paris and knowing that he’d find something special for his family, and possibly for himself. He said the brand “remains one of the most iconic of our generation,” and that now is the time to build on it for the next generation, as well as redefine what the retail experience should be for the future. He noted that it’s a “big challenge” because, to stand out and compete, “consumers expect a customized in-store shopping experience that’s unlike anything they’ve seen before.”To that end, Louvet said he sees expansive opportunity — with digital experience seemingly the top priority. But he also said the company is looking at ways to “elevate our product offerings,” as well as increase quality to sales, distribution and discounting approaches. And perhaps just as important for a company focused on redefining the future retail experience is its plan to “take advantage of the growth around the world and further tailoring our strategy to better serve our global customers in local ways,” the ceo wrote.He also disclosed the many conversations he had with founder Ralph Lauren about operating in the modern age of retail and emphasized: “[W]e see a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to evolve Ralph Lauren in a way that drives new growth and value in an industry undergoing unprecedented change.”Shares of Ralph Lauren were up 2 percent to close at $72.76 in New York Stock Exchange trading.Louvet was named ceo in May. When the company posted fourth-quarter and full-year results a day after the ceo disclosure, chief financial officer Jane Nielsen said Louvet was the right person for the job because of his collaborative leadership style, diverse experience across channels and expertise in operations and in leveraging consumer insights.
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