KURTZMAN OUT AS CEO AT ASHFORD: Kenny Kurtzman is out as chief executive officer of Ashford.com, but will remain as vice chairman of the money-losing, three-year-old upscale accessories site, which said last spring it would turn a bottom-line profit by December 2001. Succeeding Kurtzman as ceo is David Gow, Ashford’s chief financial officer. Gow was also named to the board of Houston-based Ashford, whose stock price is off sharply from its IPO price of $13 in September 1999. The issue closed at 52 cents, off 5 cents, in Nasdaq trading Monday.
MADDEN LEAVES HOT TOPIC BOARD: Orval Madden, founder and former chief executive officer of the teen chain Hot Topic, has resigned as a board director and will not seek reelection next year. He could not be reached for comment Monday, but remains a “part-time” employee and consultant to the company, Hot Topic said. He was succeeded late last year as ceo by Betsey McLaughlin, who had been president and now holds both titles. The chain also has opened its first Torrid store and Web site for plus-size apparel, as expected.
BISOU BISOU QUITS Private Label: Bisou Bisou is closing its three-year-old $7 million private label business, chief executive officer Marc Bohbot told WWD Monday. The contemporary sportswear firm, based in Los Angeles, will focus on its branded and retail businesses, which brings in roughly $48 million annually. Bohbot also said he plans to add three more Bisou Bisou boutiques to the current 17.