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Kate Spade CEO out after less than two years on the job

The troubled Kate Spade brand is looking for a new chief executive to get the brand back on track.   

Tapestry, whose brands include Kate Spade, Coach and Staurt Weitzman, said that  Anna Bakst, CEO and brand president of Kate Spade, will depart the company at the end of the calendar year. Tapestry CFO Joanne Crevoiserat  will lead Kate Spade while the company searches for a new chief executive. 

Bakst has been at the helm of Kate Spade since March 2018. She was brought in to turnaround the ailing brand, which has strugged to resonate with consumers  since it was acquired by Tapestry in 2017. But her efforts did not bear much fruit and Kate Spade’s sales have continued to slip.  In Tapestry’s most recent quarter, ended Sept. 28,  the brand’s global same-store sales were down 16%.  Sales fell 6% to $306 million compared to $325 million in the year-ago period. 

Prior to joining Kate Spade, Bakst was group president of accessories and footwear at Michael Kors. She also spent 12 years at Donna Karan International. 

“We thank Anna for the passion and commitment she has brought to her work at Kate Spade,” stated Jide Zeitlin, chairman and CEO of Tapestry.  “We are moving ahead quickly with a search process. Our strong Kate Spade leadership team, working with Joanne, will take the business forward aligned with Nicola Glass’s [Kate Spade creative director] creative vision. Quarter-to-date, Kate Spade’s performance is on track and we are confident in our ability to meet our holiday season goals.”

Zeitlin took the CEO reins at Tapestry in September following the departure of Victor Luis. 


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