This week in retail appointments

Jane Hertzmark Hudis, Estée Lauder executive group president

Estée Lauder shakes things up

Estée Lauder, the New York-based international cosmetics giant, has announced a major reshuffle in its executive ranks, which it described as the formation of a third brand cluster.

Under the new arrangement, Stéphane de La Faverie has been promoted to group president, while continuing in his role as global brand president of Estée Lauder and Aerin. His new portfolio of brands will include Jo Malone London, Aramis and Designer Fragrances, Le Labo, Darphin, Lab Series, By Kilian, Editions de Parfums Frédéric Malle, Rodin olio lusso and Prescriptives.

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Jane Hertzmark Hudis (pictured) has been promoted to executive group president, effective immediately. She will continue to report directly to Fabrizio Freda, president and CEO, with brand portfolio oversight of Estée Lauder, La Mer, Bobbi Brown, Aerin, Origins, Aveda, Bumble and bumble, Dr. Jart+ and Do The Right Thing.

John Demsey, executive group president, will be part of the new cluster, and will evolve his brand portfolio. He will continue to oversee Mac, Clinique, Becca, Too Faced, Smashbox, Glamglow and Tom Ford Beauty, and will be a key adviser.

Steinert retires from Stockland

Mark Steinert is retiring as CEO and managing director of Stockland, Australia’s largest listed developer, after seven and a half years in the role.

Steinert will continue his work until a successor can be put in place. According to the Australian Financial Review the transition period could last until October of this year or March of next year, depending on whether an internal or external candidate is hired.

Steinert, a former UBS analyst, took over Stockland at a delicate time, as the company had issued three earnings downgrades in a year after “over-optimistic forecasts”, the AFR reported.

He was praised by chairman Tom Pockett for solidifying Stockland’s position and “making significant progress” in reshaping its portfolio.

It is now expected that his retirement will set off extensive movement among executives in Australia’s property sector.

Gome founder wins release

The founder and former chairman of Chinese electronics retail giant Gome Retail Holdings has been released on parole from a Chinese prison after 10 years.

Wong Kwong Yu was arrested in 2008 and jailed in 2010, sentenced to 14 years for illegal business dealings, insider trading and corporate bribery, as well as the transfer of 800 million yuan ($164 million) to underground private banks in 2007 to pay gambling debts, according to the South China Morning Post.

Wong, who is also known as Huang Guangyu, was scheduled to be released in 2022, but his sentence was reduced for good behaviour. He is on parole until next February.

Wong, who built Gome Electronics into China’s biggest bricks-and-mortar appliance retailer, remains a very wealthy man, with an estimated fortune of nine billion yuan ($1.85 billion).

It is believed that he continued to exchange ideas with Gome company executives via letters during his imprisonment, and the Post reports that Wong and his wife remain the company’s largest shareholders.


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