(Filed Under Financial and General Interest News). Van de Velde has a new CEO, Marleen Vaesen, who has been a board member since 2012. She replaced Erwin Van Laethem, who led the company for the last two years after spending 27 exclusively in various parts of the energy business.
The Belgium-based company is parent to the Rigby & Peller retail chain in the U.S., as well as others in Europe, and the PrimaDonna, Marie Jo, Andres Sarda intimate apparel and swim brands. Noting that Van Laethem’s exit was by “mutual agreement,” it added he had “launched a number of digital transformation projects” during his tenure.
Van de Velde’s sales fell 3.9% in the first half of 2018, while net profit plunged 25% as the company spent heavily on information and communications technology and “eCommerce functionalities.” In announcing those results in September it said it expected the financial trends to extend to the full year.
Explaining the choice of Vaesen to lead, the company pointed to her “extensive experience,” stating she “started her career in marketing at Procter & Gamble and subsequently at Sara Lee / Douwe Egberts where she was responsible for the launch of Senseo” (which is a coffee pod brewing system). Van de Velde continued, “during her tenure she took on international responsibilities for marketing and innovation. Marleen was also CEO of Greenyard during five years.” That company is a wholesaler of fruits, vegetables, flowers and plants based in Belgium.
Concluded board chairman Herman Van de Velde: “The announced change is the next step to put our brand experience and our customers at the center. Marleen Vaesen is a good choice for this due to the fact that she has been a board member of the company for years.” — NM
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