Posted by Mark J. Miller on September 18, 2012 04:29 PM
Gap’s last design director, Patrick Robinson, was hailed as a “savior” when he first signed on with the company. But he was thrown off the ship more than a year ago — and Gap Inc. has finally named a new savior to oversee its flagship brand.
Gap’s next look across all of its departments will be molded by 42-year-old Danish-born Rebekka Bay, who has been named creative director and head of global design. She was plucked from Danish design house Bruuns Bazaar, where she oversaw women’s and men’s apparel design and won kudos for turning out a Spring/Summer 2012 collection at Copenhagen Fashion Week that was described as "young, but also fetching on adults. And all of it came in a timeless style with a twist and edge controlled by a designer who made no compromise with processing or quality."
Before that, she was a top exec at H&M, where she launched and developed the high-end COS brand in 2006, which has had much success in Europe, Asia, and the Middle East, the Daily Mail notes. Bay's design chops and global experience and mens/womenswear experience should bode well for the Gap brand.Continue reading...
Posted by Shirley Brady on June 18, 2012 06:35 PM
J. C. Penney Company, Inc. today ousted its JCPenney brand president, Michael Francis, who oversaw the retailer's merchandising and marketing operations, with a terse statement that "We thank Michael for his hard work at jcpenney and wish him the best in his future endeavors."
Francis, who was hired last October "at great expense" (as the New York Times retail reporter tweeted, in light of his whopping $12 million signing bonus) from Target is seen as taking the fall for his boss, company CEO Ron Johnson, the former Apple top retailer who oversaw JCP's new brand strategy in January. Now, of course, the heat is on Johnson to clean up a mess that was arguably of his own making.
For an executive whose goal is to "simplify" matters internally and externally, it was Johnson who championed the idea of killing coupons and sales in favor of "fair and square pricing" (a reference to its logo), so-called "monthlong value" and "everyday low" pricing and twice-monthly clearance events on every first and third Friday (aka "payday" in America). The brand recently scrapped that strategy and is re-embracing the dreaded s-word — "sale."Continue reading...