NEW YORK — Claudia Thomas, a former president and chief executive officer of Perry Ellis International, has been named president and ceo of Carolina Herrera Ltd.
Thomas, who begins her job Monday, succeeds Michael Pellegrino, who is leaving the company after 11 years. Thomas reports to designer and principal Carolina Herrera.
“Claudia will oversee all aspects of the company as we continue to grow, including our collection and licensing businesses,” Herrera said Tuesday.
Pellegrino said he had wanted to pursue other ventures for some time, but waited for Hererra to find someone she was comfortable with to run the company.
“I have several things in the offing and hope to make a decision after the first of the year,” he said.
Thomas left Perry Ellis in 1994, after seven years with the company. Since 1995, Thomas has been a partner in January Productions Inc., a fragrance, bath and body company that develops private label and branded beauty products. Thomas said the most notable brand the company helped launch was Amphibia, the Kermit the Frog fragrance that bowed last Christmas. Thomas said she would not be involved in the day-to-day operations of that company but would remain on its board.
“The opportunity to work with Carolina Hererra is tremendous, and I’m excited to be back in the luxury end of the business,” Thomas said. “The product and image of the company is so strong, and there’s a wealth of talent to build upon.”
In addition to her signature collection, Herrera has separate bridal, knitwear and accessories divisions, and licensed lines including eyewear, jewelry and fragrances. The apparel lines generate about $10 million a year.