January 12, 2017 – Retail focused executive search firm Kirk Palmer Associates has added Caroline Pill as vice president in London and Alex Montefalco as head of creative in New York.
Ms. Pill will be responsible for building the firm’s global business practice with clients in Europe, Asia and the U.S. Most recently, she served as vice president of executive recruitment at Karen Harvey Consulting where she was responsible for leading senior executive search assignments in Europe, Asia and the U.S. Prior to that, she was with Spencer Stuart for three years, focusing on search projects in the international fashion and luxury industry.
Ms. Montefalco will focus building Kirk Palmer Associates’ creative and design search practice globally. Previously, she was director for executive and creative recruitment for LVMH. She spent four years at there conducting executive and creative assignments for the world’s largest luxury products group, with 70 brands. Prior to LVMH, Ms. Montefalco was employed at Kirk Palmer Associates and before that she was with Karen Harvey Consulting.
“I am thrilled to welcome Caroline to the firm and to welcome back Alex to the KPA family,” said Kirk Palmer, chief executive officer. “Both are highly regarded in the industry and embody the values of our firm. Along with our senior executive team, Caroline and Alex are the perfect combination to help us build our creative practice and expand our global reach in executive search.”
Deep Network, Personal Touch
Founded in 1987 by an industry expert with a true passion for retail, Kirk Palmer Associates is composed entirely of retail and fashion industry veterans uniquely qualified to leverage their first-hand knowledge and insider credibility. With a deep network and the resources of a large search firm, Kirk Palmer offers the personal touch and service of a boutique. The firm’s partners have placed more than 1,000 CEOs, presidents, vice presidents, and other senior executives at over 200 retail and wholesale companies across all channels, sectors and functional areas ….. Here’s some further reading from Hunt Scanlon Media.
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Major Shifts In Retail Mean New Leaders Required
According to Korn Ferry, retailers are facing major shifts in their businesses that call for ‘unprecedented responses’ by CEOs who can effectively lead through change, intuitively and analytically understand the evolving consumer, and respond to ambiguity. According to the firm, developed markets, excess retail capacity, rising prices, the shift to omni-channel retail, and the unpredictable pace of change in consumer shopping habits all affect the type of leader retailers need.
As a result, in recent months Hunt Scanlon Media has seen an uptick in executive searches for the retail and fashion industries. Here’s a look at several our from news archives:
- Heidrick & Struggles placed Jerome Griffith as chief executive officer of Lands’ End. Mr. Griffith, a respected global executive with extensive experience driving growth and innovation for iconic consumer brands, hopes to turn things around for the retailer. He previously served as president and CEO of Tumi Holdings, Inc. The firm also recruited Lawrence Mac Dougall as CEO of South African-headquartered Tiger Brands Limited. Mr. Mac Dougall previously worked as managing director of Bromor Foods and Cadbury (Pty) Ltd in South Africa. He also led Kraft Foods and Mondelez International as regional president.
- Herbert Mines Associates recruited Wendy Kahn as CEO and brand president of Stuart Weitzman, a high-end shoe company owned by Coach Inc. Ms. Kahn joined Coach from Valentino Fashion Group, S.P.A., where she was CEO – Valentino, USA and V.F.G., USA & Canada. The firm also placed Mary Ellen Coyne as CEO of J.McLaughlin. Ms. Coyne joined J.McLaughlin after spending 19 years at Ralph Lauren, having most recently served as chief merchandising officer of the POLO Women’s and Children’s divisions.
- Korn Ferry has been retained by home furnishings retail company Pier 1 Imports to lead its search for a new CEO. Past CEO Alex Smith left the company at the end of the year. Mr. Smith had a strong start and led a turnaround at Pier 1 after the recession, but more recently the company has struggled with its online business and profit margins.
- DHR International recruited Andy Donkin as chief marketing officer of Under Armour. Mr. Donkin previously served as head of worldwide mass and brand marketing at Amazon, where he managed the company’s global media budget and developed offline and online campaigns globally for North America, Europe and Asia.
- Reffett Associates tapped Marc Jones as chief operating officer of HAC, Inc., parent of Homeland Grocery Stores. Mr. Jones previously served as chief merchandising and supply chain officer of Greensboro, NC-based The Fresh Market.
Contributed by Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor, Hunt Scanlon Media