BABIN SUCCEEDS HEUER AT LVMH U.S. DIVISION

Byline: Melanie Kletter

NEW YORK — Tag Heuer president and chief executive officer Jean-Christophe Babin has stepped in as president and ceo of the LVMH U.S. watch and jewelry division, replacing Susan Nicholas.
A company spokesman confirmed that Nicholas, who was also president and ceo of Tag Heuer USA, left the company on Monday.
Babin also remains president and ceo of the Swiss watch brand, having been named to that position in July 2000.
LVMH has been expanding its watch business in recent years with a string of acquisitions, including the Ebel and Tag Heuer brands, as well as Zenith, a watch and movements manufacturer.
Company executives did not return calls for comment regarding the management changes here. However, the executive shift comes as Tag Heuer is preparing to open its first U.S. boutique in SoHo next week.
Nicholas joined Tag Heuer in 1995 as director of marketing and was promoted to executive vice president and general manager in 1997. She became president and ceo of LVMH U.S. watch and jewelry division when that entity was formed in the spring of 2000.
“Nicholas was in place a long time and she helped the company through a very difficult period where it was able to change its strategy and move significantly upmarket,” said Anthony J. D’Ambrosio, the former executive vice president of watch retailer Tourneau, who now has his own consulting firm. “She also helped the company through a difficult corporate transition and made it as seamless as possible for the retailers.”

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