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Forever 21 hires expert to help with brand transformation

Forever 21

Forever 21 has hired a marketing expert to lead its efforts to redefine and transform its brand.

The struggling fast-fashion retailer said it has retained Marisa Thalberg, former global chief brand officer of Taco Bell and current strategic advisor to Yum! Brands (parent of Taco Bell), in a short-term project to lead its efforts in redefining and transforming the Forever 21 brand. Thalberg is working directly with Linda Chang, Forever 21 executive VP, on shifting the brands’ position in the market, and establishing a stronger brand purpose, strategy and messaging, the company said.

“Marisa’s experience in brand positioning and strategy is an invaluable resource as we transform our brand identity,” said Chang. “She has an incredible reputation for inspiring teams to take brands to new heights of cultural relevance and business performance, and we look forward to working closely together to do just that.”

Forever 21 filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in September and announced it would close up to 178 U.S. stores. The company renegotiated its loan to avoid a default in bankruptcy, the retailer disclosed in court filings on Dec. 16, reported the Wall Street Journal.

At Taco Bell, Thalberg led such notable, high-impact marketing projects as the Taco Bell x Forever 21 collaboration and the Taco Bell Hotel. Previously, she founded Executive Moms in 2002, and has held various leadership positions with The Estée Lauder Companies, Sure Fit, Unilever Cosmetics International and Revlon, among others.

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