More changes at Lands’ End as ex Dolce & Gabbana U.S. president named CEO.
Just months from spinning off as a separate public company from Sears Holdings in April, Lands’ End has taken another step to up their game, announcing that Federica Marchionni, Dolce & Gabbana’s U.S. president, will be the company’s next CEO. Marchionni will join the historically preppy, casual retailer on February 17th, replacing CEO Edgar Huber, who has resigned his post.
Marchionni, who joined Dolce & Gabbana in 2001 as a global group director and became president in 2011, is viewed as a welcome addition to Lands’ End, whose shares recently dropped 17.2 percent to $41.97, after their disappointing guidance came out on Jan. 22. Since, the report shares have continued to slip to $34.69 as of today’s opening bell.
Last month, Lands’ End reported that its fourth-quarter revenues would fall to between $505 million and $515 million, down from $530 million a year ago, while earnings would sink to between $1.06 and $1.16 a diluted share from $1.44 in the final quarter of the prior year.
Non-executive chairman of Lands’ End, Josephine Linden, thanks Huber for his transition from Sears Holding and described Marchionni as a “multi-talented, visionary business leader with a complete set of creative, strategic and analytical skills to grow a multi-channel apparel brand in a highly competitive and evolving global environment.”
With annual sales in excess of $1.5 billion, roots more than 50 years deep and a great team behind it, Lands’ End is ready for a new leader to accelerate the realization of the full potential of the brand and drive profitable growth.
Industry experts recognize that profitable growth may be difficult to come by as the brand works to disengage from Sears, where it still is represented on the sales floor, while growing its retail and online presence in a crowed market. The brand may have to truncate its wholesale distribution quicker than it would like, while growing its retail and direct to consumer footprint. On the positive side, the brand did not lose consumer confidence from its association with Sears Holding and with careful management, is poised to be a cornerstone of American Sportswear.