On the Move: New CEOs at Intermix, Diesel, amika and Eva NYC

Plus, hiring news at The Honest Company, Happy Socks and more.

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(Image by The Current)

Welcome to On the Move. In this hiring-focused weekly feature, The Current is rounding up recent arrivals and departures at brands and retailers across the ecommerce landscape.

This week, a pair of Italian fashion brands make key leadership moves, an activist investor sets his sights on Unilever and brands like The Honest Company and Foot Locker are bringing on transformational talent.

Check out the full roundup:

Intermix names Karen Katz interim CEO

\u200bKaren Katz (Intermix)

Karen Katz (Intermix)

This month brings a CEO transition at women’s fashion brand Intermix.

Karen Katz, the former president and CEO of Neiman Marcus and a board member at the brand, will become the interim CEO.

Katz will succeed Jyothi Rao in the top day-to-day role at the brand, who is ending an eight-year tenure with the company.

“We are thrilled to have Karen step into the role as interim CEO,” said Keoni Schwartz, cofounder and managing director of Altamont Capital Partners, which acquired Intermix from Gap, Inc. in 2021. “I want to thank Jyothi for her leadership at Intermix. Her strategic vision to fully integrate the stores with the ecommerce business positioned the brand to be a leading omni-channel fashion business for women.”

Katz retired as CEO of Neiman Marcus in 2018 after 33 years with the retailer, and now serves on the boards of Humana Healthcare, Under Armour and The Real Real.

amika and Eva NYC hires Reuben Carranza as CEO

Reuben Carranza.

Reuben Carranza. (Image via LinkedIn)

Independent haircare brands amika and Eva NYC announced the appointment of Reuben Carranza as CEO, effective July 5.

Carranza most recently served as CEO of skincare brand Kate Somerville, and previously served as president of haircare brand Olaplex. He has also worked at R+Co, Wella NA, and Procter & Gamble.

amika and Eva NYC were recently acquired by Bansk Group, a consumer-focused private investment firm. Carranza will work with leaders of both brands to build on recent momentum.

"Demand for prestige and masstige haircare continues to accelerate as customers are increasingly passionate about what goes into products and how they are formulated,” Carranza said in a statement. “Both amika and Eva NYC have built distinctive brands founded on proven efficacy, sustainability, and inclusivity, championing innovation and diversity since inception – I am confident that we will capitalize on a number of new and exciting organic growth and expansion opportunities in the space.

Mollie hires Klarna CTO

Koen K\u00f6ppen

Koen Köppen. (Image via Klarna)

Fintech company Mollie said Koen Köppen is joining the company as chief technology officer. Köppen previously held the same role at Klarna, the prominent Swedish company known for buy now pay later services.

Mollie, which is based in the Netherlands, provides technology that allows businesses to integrate payments into a web-based service or app.

“This was a unique opportunity for Mollie to secure an experienced leader with deep expertise in the financial ecosystem,” said Mollie CEO Shane Happach, in a statement. “Koen has led large teams through many modern-day, complex challenges, and he is the perfect person to help us continue to scale our business.”

The Honest Company names Steve Winchell as EVP

Steve Winchell

Steve Winchell. (Courtesy image)

Digitally native brand The Honest Company named Steve Winchell as EVP for operations and R&D.

Founded by actress Jessica Alba, The Honest Company makes products in categories such as baby, beauty, cleaning and home care. The newly created role will help the company “accelerate our strategy forward as we continue to expand our operations capabilities and portfolio of products," said Nick Vlahos, CEO of The Honest Company, in a statement.

Winchell previously served as EVP of product at cannabis platform The Parent Company, and helped to take it public in 2021. He previously served in leadership roles at The Clorox Company, including with divisions such as Burt’s Bees, cleaning and home care product development.

Foot Locker taps Neil Bansal to lead transformation

Neil Bansal

Neil Bansal. (Image via LinkedIn)

Athletic retailer Foot Locker announced the appointment of Neil Bansal as EVP and Chief Strategy & Transformation Officer. In this newly created role, Bansal will oversee the company’s “global transformation strategy, driving organizational outcomes with a relentless focus on the customer, growth, and innovation,” according to a news release.

Bansal previously served as SVP of strategy, insights and analytics at beer, wine and spirits company Constellation Brands. He has also held roles at McKinsey & Company, BNP Paribas, JP Morgan Chase, Citigroup, and Bank of America.

"Neil's fresh perspective and deep experience will further accelerate our consumer-led strategies as we continue to expand our customer base and delight them with a broader and richer product offering and diversify our business across brands, categories, and channels,” said CEO Richard Johnson, in a statement.

Flowers Foods announces COO transition

Heeth Varnedoe

Heeth Varnedoe (Courtesy photo)

Flowers Foods, which operates prominent bakery brands including Nature's Own, Dave's Killer Bread and Tastykake, announced that Bradley K. Alexander will retire from the position of chief operating officer after 41 years with the company.

Heeth Varnedoe, currently chief transformation officer, will assume the role of COO in the new year.

Varnedoe initially joined Thomasville, Georgia-based Flowers in 1990 before leaving in 2000, then rejoined in 2012.

"In several key roles at Flowers, Heeth has consistently demonstrated his superior business acumen and in-depth understanding of our company's operations,” CEO A. Ryals McMullian said in a statement. “Given his proven leadership skills, I have every confidence he will do an outstanding job as we continue our digital transformation efforts while remaining focused on serving the needs of our consumers."

Activist investor Peltz joins Unilever’s board

Nelson Peltz

Nelson Peltz (Courtesy photo)

Change could be afoot at one of the world’s largest consumer goods companies.

Billionaire investor Nelson Peltz joined the board of Unilever as a non-executive director.

A founding partner of hedge fund Trian Fund Management, L.P, Peltz is known as an activist investor who makes changes with an eye toward improving returns for shareholders.

He previously served on the boards of consumer goods companies including The Procter & Gamble Company, H.J. Heinz Company and Mondelēz International. Peltz shook up P&G during a nearly-four-year stint on that prominent CPG company's board, Bloomberg reported.

Poletto rises to CEO role at Diesel

Erlado Poletto

Erlado Poletto. (Courtesy image)

Italian fashion brand Diesel promoted Eraldo Poletto to the role of global CEO, Just Style reports.

Poletto previously held CEO roles at footwear brands Stuart Weitzman and Salvatore Ferragamo, as well as designer handbag brand Furla.

Diesel indicated that current CEO Massimo Piombini had completed his task of repositioning the company.

Donald Kohler will become CEO for North America at Diesel, which was Poletto’s previous position. He previous served as president of Burberry Americas.

Prada names Massardi chief business development officer

Roberto Massardi is rejoining Italian luxury brand Prada in the newly created role of chief business development officer, WWD reported. According to WWD, Massardi joins as the company is looking to double ecommerce sales to reach 15% of its retail revenue. Massardi has previously held roles at Pirelli Group, Jil Sander and SpA.

Renfro joins West Marine as chief commercial officer

Aftermarket boating and fishing products provider West Marine said Stacey Renfro is joining the company as chief commercial officer.

Renfro most recently served as CEO of digitally native brand mDesign. Previously, she served as Chief Digital and Customer Experience Officer at The Vitamin Shoppe, and held leadership positions at Pier 1 Imports and JC Penney.

“Through her complex growth initiatives and game-changing strategies, she has built lifestyle brands and transformed omni-channel retailers to accelerate digital strategies,” said Eric Kufel, CEO of West Marine, in a statement. “Stacy's passion for boating and the category along with her skillset and proven track record of success, will be an immediate asset to West Marine as we look to enhance our merchandising, productivity and customer experience."

Happy Socks announces 2 appointments

Retailer Happy Socks announced a pair of recent appointments, according to Fashion United:

  • Anders Lagerstedt will join the company as chief commercial officer, joining the company from Aurora and Deltaco. He previously worked at Hope, Acne Studios, Hunkydory and Triwa.
  • Jessica Lagerblad Öhrn will return to the company as design and assortment director. She spent two years developing brands at Skincity, and previously worked at Tiger of Sweden and H&M.

Unbounce welcomes 3 new executives

Unbounce, a landing page and conversion intelligence software company based in Vancouver, Canada, added three new leaders to its executive team. They include:

  • Pete Housley joined the company as chief marketing officer. He most recently served as chief revenue officer at INDOCHINO, and brings experience from Milestones, Lavalife and the Hudson’s Bay Company.
  • Darby Sieben joined the company as chief product officer, bringing over 25 years of experience at companies including Yellow Pages, Mediative and RBC Ventures.
  • Saba El-Hilo is VP of engineering. She most recently was the head of data platform at Mapbox.

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