The Spiegel Group today named Fabian Månsson as president and chief executive officer for its Eddie Bauer division effective immediately. Månsson will report to Martin Zaepfel, vice chairman, president and chief executive officer of The Spiegel Group.
Månsson, 38, formerly served as chief executive officer of H&M (Hennes & Mauritz), one of Europe's most successful retail chains with more than $4 billion in sales and more than 800 stores located worldwide. While at H&M from 1991 through 2000, Månsson served in a variety of positions, including group merchandising manager and division manager, before assuming the role of chief executive.
Månsson was most recently an executive vice president with Spray Ventures, a Swedish venture capital company, where he was jointly responsible with the chief executive officer for successfully reducing operating costs, improving the company's financial structure and restructuring parts of the business.
In making the announcement, Zaepfel stated, "We are extremely pleased to have someone with Månsson's experience and retailing capability to lead Eddie Bauer as we work to reinvigorate the brand. Månsson is a highly regarded retail executive who is credited with upgrading H&M's image and steering the company into a leadership position. He has a proven ability to develop highly efficient and fast processes in sourcing and merchandising, which will be particularly important as Eddie Bauer strives to be quicker and more flexible in delivering products and services that address customers' needs. I am confident that Månsson's expertise along with his passion and energy will have a significant, positive influence on the future course and success of Eddie Bauer."
Commenting on his new position, Månsson stated, "Eddie Bauer has a rich heritage combined with strong brand equity. I am very confident that with this powerful and recognized brand behind us, we will be able to improve both the top line sales performance and the profitability of this business. As we execute our new brand positioning, I look forward to working with the Eddie Bauer team to identify and implement merchandising and marketing strategies that connect with our customers across all channels and position the company as a top-performing specialty retailer."
Månsson is a native of Stockholm, Sweden. He received a degree in Economics and Business Administration from the Stockholm School of Economics. He also was elected "Global Leader for Tomorrow" by the World Economic Forum in Davos.
A leading tri-channel specialty retailer, Eddie Bauer, Inc. offers distinctive clothing, accessories and home furnishings for men and women that reflect a modern interpretation of the company's unique outdoor heritage. Emphasizing classic styles, Eddie Bauer offers versatile, comfortable, high-quality merchandise through its two retailing concepts: Eddie Bauer(R) and Eddie Bauer Homeâ. In its 82-year history, Eddie Bauer has evolved from a single store in Seattle to a tri-channel, international company with stores, catalogs and Web sites. Eddie Bauer operates stores in the U.S. and Canada, and through joint venture partnerships in Germany and Japan. Eddie Bauer is a wholly owned subsidiary of The Spiegel Group.[borders/disc4aftr.htm]