Tiffany & Co CEO to step down in 2015

Tiffany & Co (NYSE:TIF), CEO Michael Kowalski will be retiring next year after 31 years of service with the upscale jeweler.

Kowalski, 62, joined the company in 1983 and became CEO in 1999, reported The Christian Science Monitor. On April 1, 2015 he will be succeeded by company president Frederic Cumenal, who joined the company approximately four years ago and was given a newly created seat on the company's board in September 2013.

"We believe this transition will be considered a positive as (Tiffany's) senior management team continues to evolve into one with much broader global luxury goods experience than ever before," Topeka Capital Markets analyst Dorothy Lakner wrote in a note. Tiffany had been searching for a replacement for Cumenal.

Kowalski oversaw Tiffany's expansion in Asian markets such as Japan and China, helping offset the company's lackluster sales in U.S. markets in the past two years. The second highest number of Tiffany stores is located in the Asia-Pacific region, where the company operated 72 stores as of January 31.

At 54, Cumenal's experience includes a 15-year tenure with Louis Vuitton brand owner LVMH Group (EPA:MC), where he was president and CEO of French champagne producer Moet & Chandon. Story

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