Industry Moves: Merrell Names New Brand President

Merrell Shoe of the Week
Merrell Burnt Rock shoe for spring '17.
Joshua Scott.

May 22, 2017: Outdoor standout Merrell has appointed Sue Rechner to the role of president. Rechner report directly to the Wolverine Outdoor and Lifestyle Group president Todd Spaletto, who recently joined the company from The North Face. Rechner spent the past 10 years as CEO and president of Confluence Outdoor, an American manufacturer of kayaks, canoes and paddle sport accessories.

May 19, 2017: Bruno Magli has appointed Scott Prentice to the newly created role of president of the North American Bruno Magli footwear division under partnership with Harbor Footwear Group. Prentice is returning to the company after serving in a similar position at Bruno Magli between 1995 and 2005. He has also previously held senior positions at Bally and Calvin Klein.

May 18, 2017: Rocky Brands Inc. has promoted Jason Brooks, most recently its president of Core Brands, to president and CEO, effective May 19. Mike Brooks, its most recent chairman and CEO, will continue to serve as chairman of the board. Jason Brooks has been with the company since 1997 when he joined as an independent sales representative. Rocky Brands’ portfolio of footwear and apparel labels includes Georgia Boot, Durango and Creative Recreation.

May 17, 2017: Ralph Lauren Corp. has named Procter & Gamble veteran Patrice Louvet president and CEO, effective July 17, 2017. He will also be appointed to the firm’s board of directors. The announcement comes just three months after the company said that Stefan Larsson — the first president and CEO to succeed Lauren — was exiting the firm due to creative differences with its founder. As was the case with Larsson’s arrival, Lauren will continue as executive chairman and chief creative officer. Louvet will dual-report to Lauren in his capacity as executive chairman of the board and to the company’s board of directors. Louvet most recently served as group president of global beauty at P&G, a division of 12 brands with around $11.5 billion in revenues in 2016.

May 16, 2017: Columbia Sportswear Co. announced that Bryan Timm will be stepping down from his role as president and COO. Timm has been with the company for 20 years, serving previously as corporate controller, treasurer and CFO. According to the company, Timm’s responsibilities will be handled by other members of the senior management team as the firm continues to work through its previously announced operating model assessment that was initiated during the first quarter of 2017.

May 16, 2017: Custom insoles and comfort footwear maker Superfeet has appointed Chuck Sanson as director of business development. Focusing on Superfeet’s new technologies, Sanson will create strategies and growth initiatives for the brand’s digital products, including the new custom 3D-printed insoles. His new role will also include seeking out new channels for Superfeet’s technology and custom products. Prior to joining Superfeet, Sanson worked with Pearl Izumi USA for 15 years, most recently as director of the running division.

May 15, 2017: VF Corp. has appointed Arne Arens to the position of global brand president of The North Face, effective immediately. In March, Arens was named VP and GM of the brand’s Americas business. He will continue to report to Scott Baxter, VP of VF and group president of Outdoor & Action Sports Americas. Prior to joining VF in 2010, Arens worked at Nike in Europe, where he spent eight years in marketing, sales and category roles. In his new role, he replaces Todd Spaletto, who left the company in January.

May 11, 2017: Dick’s Sporting Goods has made several key executive changes. André Hawaux is retiring from his position as EVP & COO. Hawaux will remain with the company through the second quarter of 2017. Lauren Hobart has been appointed president of the company, effective immediately, reporting to Dick’s chairman and CEO, Edward Stack. In her new role, Hobart will continue to lead the company’s customer and digital efforts, overseeing marketing, ecommerce and Dick’s Team Sports HQ, and will assume responsibility for the stores. She joined Dick’s in February 2011 and most recently served as EVP and chief customer and digital officer. Additionally, Keri Jones will join Dick’s on May 22 as EVP and chief merchant, reporting to Edward Stack. Prior to joining the company, she held a variety of leadership positions at Target Corp., including VP and general merchandising manager of toys and sporting goods. Lastly, Don Germano, who led Dick’s stores’ organization from 2010 through 2013, will rejoin the company on May 30 as SVP of operations, reporting to Hobart.

May 10, 2017: Robert Clergerie has named French shoe designer David Tourniaire-Beauciel as its new creative director, following its recent nomination of Perry Oosting as CEO. Tourniaire-Beauciel succeeds Roland Mouret at the creative helm of Robert Clergerie. Mouret will focus on his namesake brand, closing a six-year-long collaboration with Robert Clergerie. Tourniaire-Beauciel will fully design the fall/winter 2018 collection, but his first input will already be visible in the spring/summer 2018 Main collection, according to the brand.

May 2, 2017: Hudson’s Bay Co. — the Canadian parent of Saks Fifth Ave., Lord & Taylor and other luxury department stores — announced that its CFO Paul Beesley has resigned from his post. HBC said Beesley made the decision to resign in early July in order to return home to Canada to be closer to his family. He will continue in his role over the next two months to ensure a smooth transition. Beesley moved to New York to join HBC as CFO in May 2014; his last day with HBC is July 7, 2017.

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