Fashion Consumer Products Insights in the Media
Members of the E.A. Hughes team are citizens of the fashion consumer products and other industry sectors we serve. And, with more than 50% of our searches at the CEO/COO/President level, we have a unique understanding of the people who make up the industry’s senior management teams. As such, not only do top retail sector companies reach out to us as business partners, industry and business media regularly seek us out for candid comment and insight on the changes and challenges facing the global marketplace.
Excerpt from WWD, May 18, 2017ralph-lauren-talks-partnership-naming-new-ceo
“But Elaine Hughes, chief executive officer of E.A. Hughes, an executive search firm, was positive about Louvet’s hiring.
“The good news for most of these package goods people, the shift has happened where branding is so important, and they’re experts at that. They understand how to develop sustainable brands, more so than these flash-in-the-pan brands. The other thing is they’re all trained far better, coming out of packaged goods, in leadership and development of organizations with succession planning leadership, moreso than people who have historically come out of the wholesale or even the retail business,” she said. Packaged goods executives understand the need to collaborate with many groups of people to initiate their businesses, she said.
Hughes observed that many people who have grown up in the wholesale and particularly the U.S. domestic retail business don’t have a global point of view. “Any company, whether it’s a Ralph Lauren or the vertical retailers today, needs individuals with truly a global point of view in order to sustain their businesses. We’re still in an over-stored and over-brand environment here, and the only uptick to the businesses is an international expansion.
“The ones that don’t have that international experience, many times there are missteps in their execution overseas. They won’t have the sense of the cultural innuendos,” she said. “The hiring of Patrice is a very positive step for the Ralph Lauren organization,” said Hughes, who noted that Lauren has had terrific partnerships in the past, whether it was Peter Strom or Roger Farah.”
Article by Lisa Lockwood and Bridget Foley with contributions from Allison Collins
Ralph Lauren Talks ‘Partnership’ in Naming New CEO
April 14, 2017 – Executive search firm E.A. Hughes & Co. has placed former Ralph Lauren executive Barbara Garces as chief digital officer (CDO) of Citizen Watch America. Recruiting partner Ann MacCarthy led the assignment.
In this new role, Ms. Garces will lead the development and implementation of the company’s digital strategy across all Citizen Watch brands, including Citizen, Bulova, Caravelle, Frederique Constant, and Alpina. Her experience in the wholesale and retail channels of distribution and consultative approach to influencing across multiple brands made her the ideal fit for this position, said two recruiters unaffiliated with the search.
The appointment supports the coming launch of Citizen’s ERP and Product Information System that will bring the Citizen brand portfolio to the forefront of business technology and help the company streamline its back office operations and efficiency. Founded in 1930, Citizen is today recognized as a worldwide leader in advanced technology — from designing the world’s slimmest LCD watch to offering the first voice recognition watch to creating the first professional dive watch with an electronic depth sensor — the company has reaffirmed its position as a worldwide leader in timekeeping technology.
Ms. Garces previously served as vice president of wholesale digital and e-commerce at Ralph Lauren. She joined the company in 2009 as senior director of wholesale online marketing & strategy. Ms. Garces also held e-commerce and online marketing roles at Godiva and the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
Excerpt from WWD.com – March 20, 2017
Article by Evan Clark (paid subscription required)
“The problems plaguing the industry have more to do with the historic structural sustainability of these organizations than the single individual at the helm, particularly if at the helm there’s been a succession of changes over a short period of time,” said Elaine Hughes, founder and ceo of E.A. Hughes & Co.
“The revolving c-suite [stems] from a lack of conscientious succession planning which should be a disciplined exercise in every company and something the board of directors should demand,” Hughes said.
The corner office departures at Ralph Lauren, Victoria’s Secret, Lands’ End, Stein Mart and Tiffany’s can’t be linked to any one common cause, she said.
“The individuals chosen for these roles who now have been released probably displayed the drive, resilience and thought leadership these boards sought,” Hughes said. “What was lacking was a combination of historic success in a similar model coupled with an inability to sustain as well as improve these businesses in a time of unprecedented change and acceleration.
“As long as the industry retains a myopic view on leadership and organizational development as well as refuses to see that the world is a flat canvas for talent that can be integrated from other industries particularly on the technology side, we will remain not only an industry which will be late to change but may erode because of it,” she said.
Excerpt from Crain’s New York Business – November 10, 2014
“Coach did a phenomenal job at marketing their brand at their price point, and they were the only game in town,” said Elaine Hughes, who runs retail-executive search firm E.A. Hughes & Co. “Now someone’s come in and it’s competition.”
Rocky start for Coach comeback
Article by Adrianne Pasquarelli