Monday, 23 September 2013

News: HBC Names New Saks Fifth Avenue President

Last week Hudson's Bay Company announced a new leader to head Saks Fifth Avenue.

New Saks Fifth Avenue President Marigay McKee
As HBC finalizes its acquisition of Saks Fifth Avenue, CEO Richard Baker named former chief merchant at Harrods Marigay McKee to the position of president. McKee is a 14 year veteran of Harrods and was credited with revitalizing the venerable department store's fashion assortment and growing their beauty business. She is also a member of the board of the British Fashion Council.

"Marigay McKee's experience as an effective world-class leader in the international luxury retail space is well-aligned with our vision for the Saks Fifth Avenue brand," said Richard Baker, Governor and CEO of Hudson's Bay Company. "She has a proven track record of success at the highest level of luxury and I'm very excited for her to head up our Saks business at HBC."

McKee's appointment takes effect once the acquisition is officially closed later this year.

"I am delighted to join Hudson's Bay Company to head up Saks Fifth Avenue and work with their dedicated team," said McKee. "Saks Fifth Avenue is one of the world's preeminent luxury retailers with a rich history and tradition of exceptional customer service." McKee added, "Saks presents a great opportunity as a world class brand with new frontiers for development. I'm excited for this unique challenge as we embark on this new chapter at the company."

Along with McKee's hire, Baker announced a corporate reshuffle. A new Office of the Chairman will be created consisting of Baker and COO Donald Watros. Senior HBC executives will report directly to the new Office of the Chairman. There will be four defined retail business units: the HBC Department Store Group (which consists of Hudson's Bay and Lord and Taylor), Saks Fifth Avenue, Outlets, and Home Outfitters.

"Our goals for this new structure are to maintain the unique identity of each retail brand, to build an effective and cost-efficient platform of shared services, and to position the Company for growth and expansion." Said Baker about the corporate changes.

In a related note WWD has reported that Saks is gearing up to roll-out more of their Off 5th outlet stores, including locations in Canada. Baker has said he envisions up to 7 full line Saks Fifth Avenue stores and 25 Off 5th outlets in Canada, as well as a dedicated Canadian Saks e-commerce site.

[Image via WWD]