Daniel Lalonde, president of Ralph Lauren International has been tappedas chief executive officer of holding company SMCP Group, which owns French fashion labels Sandro, Maje and Claudie Pierlot.
A formal announcement of Lalonde new appointment is expected some time today, reported WWD. He is expected to take on his new role in May and will be working closely alongside the original founders of the groups brands; Evelyne Chétrite, founder and artistic director of Sandro, her sister Judith Milgrom, founder and artistic director of Maje as well as Frédéric Biousse and Elie Kouby, manager who joined the group in 2007 and aided with the purchase of Claudie Pierlot in 2009.
Biousse and Kouby are to remain members of the executive team and are set to become advisers to Lalonde. The Canadian veteran is to join SMCP Group as its new owners, company investment fund Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co., aim to grow the brands in the mid-market apparel sector. KKR, which acquired a 65 percent stake in SMCP Group last June, is preparing to capitalize on the brands growth potential by further expansion into Europe, the US and Asia.
SMCP Group sales have increased sevenfold over the past six years and the group continues to report strong profits in a growing market for accessible fashion. In 2013, group revenues grew 20.6 percent to 422.1 million euros. The growth prospects seems promising, especially in Europe and the US, according to Lalonde, who always sees "very encouraging results" in Asia.
The parent company of Sandro, Maje and Claudie Pierlot had 714 stores around the world, and shop-in-shops in 14 counties, including 101 in the US and 11 in Asia at the end of 2013. Last year the group made 35 percent of its revenues outside of its home market of France.