April Hennig has been named senior vice president and chief merchandising officer of Moda Operandi, the e-commerce site for designer fashion that has been rebuilding its executive ranks this year, WWD has learned.
Moda Operandi said Hennig’s role is a new one on the executive team, in which she will oversee product strategy, category expansion, merchandise planning and brand partnerships and experiences. Hennig will assume this position on Aug. 30.
Hennig’s appointment is another instance of Moda’s chief executive officer, Jim Gold, leveraging his connections in retail and fashion circles to remake the executive team. “I had a chance to work closely with April and witness firsthand her work at Bergdorf Goodman and her strong brand relationships, passion for product, refined taste level, successful merchandising initiatives, and empathetic, effective leadership style,” Gold said.
Other recent senior hires include Dermott Sullivan, chief operating officer; Don Allen, chief information officer, and Mark McClendon, senior vice president of global marketing and sales.
Gold, the former president and chief merchandising officer of the Neiman Marcus Group, is himself new to Moda, having been appointed CEO in May after serving as interim CEO since January.
Hennig has more than 15 years experience in luxury fashion and retail, including business development, brand building, buying, planning and merchandising.
Most recently, she was president of Los Angeles-based designer Jonathan Simkhai. According to a statement from Moda Operandi, Hennig significantly increased revenue at Jonathan Simkhai, led the organization’s strategic initiatives and operations, and during her tenure there, the label won the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund Award.
Earlier, Hennig was a vice president and divisional merchandise manager at Bergdorf Goodman, covering women’s contemporary ready-to-wear, handbags and jewelry. She is credited with being instrumental in redefining Bergdorf’s contemporary floor on the fifth level.
Hennig began her career in the executive training program at Saks Fifth Avenue, where she held various buying roles in women’s contemporary, European designer sportswear and women’s footwear.
Hennig is a founding board member of RAISEfashion, a nonprofit founded in 2020 that is committed to advancing racial equity in the fashion industry through consulting, mentorship and professional development opportunities.
“It’s an honor to join Moda Operandi during such an exciting transformation,” Hennig said in a statement.
As reported last month, Moda secured investment from G Squared and existing investors New Enterprise Associates and Andrés Santo Domingo. The company did not disclose the amount of the new investment round. Also, Gordon Brothers with Consensus extended Moda a $13 million term loan which helped get the new investments. Aside from the new investment, Moda has raised $345 million in equity capital.
Moda is challenged by intense competition from the websites of Saks, Bergdorf Goodman and Neiman Marcus, as well as Mytheresa, Net-a-porter and Matchesfashion. The company generates somewhere between $150 million and $200 million in sales, according to sources.
Moda has also been recently rebuilding its board of directors by adding Gold, as well Alexander Tisch, copresident of Loews Hotels; Kamil Ali Jackson, cofounder and chief legal officer of Aclaris Therapeutics, and Jae Goodman, former chief creative officer and co-head of Creative Artists Agency Marketing and founder and CEO of Observatory.
The other board members are Moda founder Lauren Santo Domingo; Chris Evison, managing director of Quadrant Capital Advisors, and Tony Florence, general partner of New Enterprise Associates.
Founded in 2010, Moda Operandi is an online luxury fashion retailer that allows customers to preorder looks directly from designers, immediately after their runway show. It has more than 200 employees, ships to 125 countries and has showrooms in New York, London and Hong Kong.