Michelle Gass will take over the top role at Levi Strauss on Jan. 29.
The new year will bring a new chief executive to Levi Strauss & Co.
The denim giant said that Chip Bergh, who has served as CEO since 2011, has decided to retire from the company as of April 26, 2024. As part of a previously announced transition plan, the board has elected Michelle Gass, currently the company’s president, to succeed Bergh as president and CEO, effective Jan. 29, 2024.
In addition, the board has elected Bergh as executive vice chair until his retirement date. From there, Bergh will transition to the role of senior advisor until the end of the company’s 2024 fiscal year.
“Chip has transformed this company and will leave it far better than when he arrived," said Bob Eckert, chairman of the board. "I know we will continue to benefit from Chip’s strategic perspective as he continues to serve on the company’s board.”
Gass joined Levi Strauss as president in January 2023. Prior to that, she spent 10 years at Kohl's, where she served as chief executive since May 2018. Since joining the company, Gass has been responsible for leading the Levi’s brand, including its product, merchandising and marketing functions, as well as the company’s digital and global commercial operations, while working closely with Bergh.
“I am honored to be stepping in to lead this iconic brand and company, one that I have deeply admired and respected for many years," Gass stated. "Levi’s is more than a denim icon; it’s part of our cultural fabric and an enduring symbol of quality, innovation and progress. I am incredibly excited to lead our amazing team and to realize our ambition of becoming a world-class direct-to-consumer retailer. As we build on our 170-year legacy, I’m more confident than ever that we have the right team and strategies in place to unleash the next era of sustainable, profitable growth for LS&Co.”
Levi Strauss products are sold in more than 110 countries worldwide through a combination of chain retailers, department stores and online sites. It has global footprint of approximately 3,200 brand-dedicated stores and shop-in-shops. The company's reported 2022 net revenues were $6.2 billion.