LONDON — James Bidwell, managing director Anthropologie Europe, has left the company as part of an international restructuring.
This story first appeared in the May 19, 2010 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
Anthropologie confirmed Tuesday that Bidwell’s position had been eliminated. The company said it is undergoing a global restructuring “to better leverage internal resources in order to be closer to the customer, achieve greater efficiencies and to prepare for future international expansion.”
Co-presidents of the Anthropologie brand, Wendy B. McDevitt and Wendy Wurtzburger, will take responsibility for management and growth internationally, with support from the U.K.-based team.
The announcement comes on the heels of record first-quarter earnings for parent company Urban Outfitters Inc., which operates the Anthropologie, Free People, Leifsdottir, Terrain and Urban Outfitters brands. Last week, Urban Outfitters reported earnings of $53 million and sales of $480 million. Sales at Anthropologie rose 22 percent in the three months to April 30.
Glen Senk, chief executive officer of Urban Outfitters Inc., said he was bullish about international expansion. “I used to think international sales could be 25 percent of our business,” he said. “We could find out over time that it’s 50 percent. We no longer view ourselves as a North American retailer. The European business is becoming increasingly important to the company.”
Bidwell, a British retail veteran who was formerly ceo at VisitLondon.com, a tourism Web site, and marketing director at Selfridges, joined Anthropologie in February 2009 with the aim of planting the brand’s flag in Europe. He opened the brand’s first European store on Regent Street here in October, and a second unit on the King’s Road in March. At the same time, Bidwell launched anthropologie.co.uk, the brand’s first international Web site.