- Fifth & Pacific Companies, Inc. to become Kate Spade & Company in 2014
- Craig Leavitt to succeed William McComb as Chief Executive Officer
- George Carrara promoted to President and Chief Operating Officer
- Deborah Lloyd retains role as Chief Creative Officer
New York, NY - January 9, 2013 - Fifth & Pacific Companies, Inc. today announced that it is changing its name to Kate Spade & Company to reflect the Company's mono-brand focus. In addition, William L. McComb, Chief Executive Officer of Fifth & Pacific Companies, Inc., will be stepping down from his role and will be succeeded by Craig Leavitt, currently Chief Executive Officer of Kate Spade. George Carrara, currently Executive Vice President, Chief Operating Officer and Chief Financial Officer of Fifth & Pacific Companies, will be promoted to President and Chief Operating Officer of Kate Spade & Company; Deborah Lloyd continues in her role as Chief Creative Officer of the renamed Company. Additionally, Mr. Leavitt and Ms. Lloyd will join the Company's Board of Directors. The corporate name change and management transition are scheduled to take place following the release of fourth quarter earnings results on Tuesday, February 25, 2014, at which time the Company will begin trading as NYSE:KATE.
Commenting on the management change, Mr. McComb said: "I am personally very excited to see this team-one I have personally cultivated over the years-elevate into these roles. I believe that together they have the proven skill sets, chemistry, and momentum that this fast growing business demands. They are vision-based, they are experienced, they are analytical and they know how to deliver profit and growth, while driving branding, customer service, and high creative standards."
Mr. McComb added: "Under Craig and Deborah's leadership, Kate Spade has truly blossomed - not only growing more than seven-fold in sales, but also dramatically expanding the brand's global presence and lifestyle offerings. They are clear in their goals for the brand going forward and committed to executing them with precision. And I can't think of a better person for the President role than George. He has brought tremendous capability to our company-and talent as well. As President, George will play an instrumental role in delivering the long-range plan. My excitement is not only personal and heartfelt, but as a shareholder of the Company, I am bullish about what this team, and the one assembled to support them, can accomplish in the years to come. Craig and I will be meeting with analysts and investors in the coming weeks to ensure a smooth transition."
Mr. Leavitt said: "We have been on a journey with Kate Spade - one that has taken us across the country and around the world as we build a global, lifestyle brand that remains nimble and innovative, focused on delighting the consumer every time she interacts with us. Bill has been a strategic partner and mentor to Deborah and me, bringing an energy level and clarity of vision that has been a great asset as the business grew. The greatest thing about the leadership transition of the Company is the continuity. While the name of the Company will change, the brand and operational leadership that got us to this place not only continues, but are enhanced as we merge the Kate Spade and FNP teams. As we enter the next chapter in our story, Kate Spade will benefit from the full attention and experience of people like George, who to date has had to split his time, but now can fully focus his attention on moving us forward."
Nancy Karch, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Fifth & Pacific Companies, Inc., commented: "This is an exciting and momentous day for both Fifth & Pacific Companies and for Kate Spade. Bill, George and the entire FNP team have demonstrated remarkable vision and fortitude, getting us to this pivotal place. Craig, Deborah and the team at Kate Spade have turned a great brand tied to a small, essentially startup company into a substantial growth enterprise - and there is still much upside left to capture. On behalf of the Board of Directors, I want to express our appreciation to Bill for his dynamic leadership of the Company's transformation. We faced some serious issues across our vast portfolio almost immediately upon his arrival. His unyielding drive to succeed has gotten us to where we are today - a thriving company with great prospects for the future."
In his role, Mr. Carrara will serve as Chief Financial Officer in the interim, but the Company expects to name Thomas Linko, currently the Chief Financial Officer and Chief Operating Officer of Juicy Couture, as Chief Financial Officer of Kate Spade & Company in 2014 after the Juicy Couture wind down is substantially complete.
The Company expects to incur one-time non-cash severance charges of $16 million and cash severance charges of $7 million associated with the senior management transition.
About Fifth & Pacific Companies, Inc.
Fifth & Pacific Companies, Inc. designs and markets a portfolio of retail-based, premium, global lifestyle brands including the Kate Spade family of brands. In addition, the Adelington Design Group, a private brand jewelry design and development group, markets brands through department stores and serves jcpenney via exclusive supplier agreements for the Liz Claiborne and Monet jewelry lines. In November 2013, the Company completed the sale of the Juicy Couture intellectual property to Authentic Brands Group (ABG) and is working under a license from ABG as the Company transitions and winds down the Juicy Couture business through 2014. In December 2013, the Company entered into an agreement for the sale of its Lucky Brand business in a transaction that is expected to close in the first quarter of 2014. The Company also has a license for the Liz Claiborne New York brand, available at QVC and Lizwear, which is distributed through the club store channel. Visit www.fifthandpacific.com for more information.