LONDON — James Seuss, who stepped down last week as chief executive of the London-based fashion house Stella McCartney, has been named president of retail and wholesale distribution at Harry Winston, the luxury diamond jeweler.
Seuss, 40, will start next month, joining a new management team put in place after Aber Diamond Corp., a Canadian diamond mining company, acquired a 51 percent controlling interest in Harry Winston this year. He will report to Tom O’Neill, who is to take over next month as ceo of Harry Winston Inc. and president of Aber Diamond.
Seuss’ new position will focus on the global retail store network and wholesale development. O’Neill said Harry Winston was seeking to expand retail both in the U.S. and internationally, with an emphasis on Asia. He said the company wanted to open “a couple of stores” each year, and also planned to continue the expansion of its wholesale watch business worldwide.
Harry Winston has six retail outlets, in Manhattan, Beverly Hills, Paris, Geneva, Tokyo and Osaka, and is to open in Taipei and Las Vegas this fall.
“Over the years, Jim has distinguished himself in marketing and building luxury goods brands, both at Tiffany and in his very successful years at Gucci Group,” O’Neill said in an interview with WWD.
In a separate statement, O’Neill said, “His international expertise and background in luxury retail and wholesale will help us grow the business in key markets around the world.”
Before joining Stella McCartney, a joint venture with Gucci Group, Seuss had been managing director of Tiffany and Co. in the U.K. for four years, and was with Tiffany for a total of 12 years.
“I am very pleased to have the opportunity to extend the global reach of Harry Winston,” Seuss said in a statement. “I look forward to working with a remarkable group of professionals.”
Seuss will remain on the board of directors at Stella McCartney, which he joined in May 2001, when he became its first ceo.
O’Neill previously named Susan Korb, another Tiffany veteran, to the new post of chief marketing officer. More management changes at Harry Winston, which was founded in 1932, are expected.
At Winston, O’Neill has said he plans to concentrate on the upper end of the market.
“The focus is on what has made the company great in the first place — the finest gemstones paired with innovative design,” he told WWD earlier this year. “There are over 150,000 designs in the archives, only a fraction of which have been used.”