SEPHORA’S MEITINER HEADS FOR LVMH
PARIS — LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton has appointed Howard Meitiner president and chief executive officer of its specialty retailing group, the luxury conglomerate said Thursday.
His appointment, the latest in a string of management shifts at the luxury group, is effective Sept. 1, at which time he will step down as president and ceo of Sephora Americas and Asia Pacific, a position he’s held since 1997. In that capacity, Meitiner has overseen the introduction of the beauty chain and the opening of 57 stores in the U.S. and five in Asia.
In the position, Meitiner will be responsible for the Solstice sunglasses and Synchrony watches retailing concepts as well as other selective distribution retail operations, and will serve as director of clothier Thomas Pink. LVMH said a successor at Sephora would be named in the near future.
Meitiner succeeds Fred Wilson, who this week was named president and ceo of the American arm of LVMH’s fashion and leather goods unit. Wilson succeeded Thomas O’Neill, named president of the jewelry group. Earlier this week LVMH reported that first-half sales grew 40 percent and appointed Jean-Christophe Babin president and ceo of Tag Heuer.
Prior to his appointment at Sephora, Meitiner had already spent 18 years with LVMH’s DFS Group. He joined as vice president of operations for the Hong Kong region in 1979, became president of the Singapore division in 1984, senior vice president and general merchandise manager in 1990 and president of the Oceania region in 1995. He has also served in LVMH’s corporate office in a number of capacities, including roles in merchandising and strategic planning.
“We are confident that [Howard] will bring the same energy and commitment to his new position in selective retailing as he did to Sephora, and will ensure the specialty group’s continued achievements,” said Pierre Letzelter, president of the selective distribution group.
The selective distribution group includes specialty retailing, DFS, Sephora, Le Bon Marche and Thomas Pink. Its sales advanced a robust 59 percent in the first half, LVMH reported Tuesday.