- BURBERRY TAPS RONON:
Lynne Ronon has joined Burberry as senior vice president of the North Asia region, directing the company’s growth in China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, the Philippines, Guam and Saipan. She reports to Thomas O’Neill, president of Burberry worldwide. Ronon replaces Claire Chau, who is leaving Burberry for personal reasons, the company said. “Geographic expansion is a key plank of Burberry’s growth strategy, and there are a lot of opportunities for us to grow in Asia outside Japan,” said a Burberry spokesman. “China alone now has 26 points of distribution.” In April, the company will open its second Tokyo store. Ronon was formerly senior vice president and chief merchant at Lane Crawford. Before that, she was senior vice president and general merchandise manager of Saks Fifth Avenue.
Tehama has signed a licensing deal with Phillips-Van Heusen to produce women’s and men’s golf and tennis apparel carrying the Izod Club label. The collection ships to stores in November for spring 2005. Founded in 1997 by Clint Eastwood and industry veteran Nancy Haley, Tehama expects to generate $50 million in sales within the next three years. The company’s name is a Native American word for “abundance of nature.” Izod Club, currently produced in-house by PVH, now generates $16 million in sales. Under the license, first-year projected wholesale volume for Izod Club is $10 million. “We’re going to redefine the distribution so we’re planning for a conservative launch,” said Haley, who is chief executive of Tehama. It will be sold at resorts, golf pro shops and collegiate stores.
In the midst of a Justice Department probe into its alleged use of illegal workers, Wal-Mart Stores Inc. has hired Arkansas federal prosecutor Tom Gean as legal compliance officer, a new position. He will report to Tom Mars, general counsel. Gean, who starts in February, is part of the retailer’s new operations compliance group, established several months ago to monitor stores’ employment practices. A Wal-Mart spokeswoman described the group’s role as “making compliance with all applicable laws and regulations as simple as possible for our stores and clubs so they can focus on our customers.” Wal-Mart has been barraged with high-profile employment-related lawsuits in last 12 months, including a potentially massive gender discrimination case.