Berlin — Escada chief executive officer Bruno Sälzer is said to be in the running for the CEO post at Benetton.

Benetton declined to respond to the rumors of Salzer’s candidacy and Sälzer could not be reached for comment. However, a source close to the Italian group said the German manager is just one of several candidates for the position, which is now held by Biagio Chiarolanza. News of Salzer’s candidacy was first reported by La Repubblica.

Sälzer has been at the helm of Escada since 2008, taking the German fashion house through insolvency proceedings in 2009 and new ownership by the Mittal family in the same year. Prior to Escada, Sälzer spent 14 years with Hugo Boss, where he was named CEO in 2002.

The Benetton Group has embarked on a three-year program to restructure its operations and improve profitability, concentrating its investments in directly owned flagship and key stores for its core United Colors of Benetton and Sisley brands. Last December, the group revealed plans to divest its other labels, including Jean’s West, Killer Loop, Anthology of Cottons and Playlife.

The Italian group also created and differentiated three new business areas: managing brands, manufacturing and real estate management, to be directly controlled by Edizione S.r.l, the holding of the Benetton family.

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