OPERATIONS

Ascena Retail names president of global sourcing

BY Staff Writer

Suffern, N.Y. — Ascena Retail Group announced it has named Ronnie Robinson to the position of president of Ascena Global Sourcing (AGS).

David Jaffe, president and CEO of the Ascena Retail Group, commented: “Leveraging our sourcing capability across all our brands is an important strategic initiative for Ascena. Ronnie’s experience and accomplishments make him the ideal candidate to lead this effort.”

Robinson joined Ascena’s Tween Brands in 2001 and most recently held the position of EVP-sourcing and technical design.

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OPERATIONS

Limited CEO named CEO of Lane Bryant

BY Marianne Wilson

Suffern, N.Y. — Ascena Retail Group announced that Linda Heasley has accepted the position of president and CEO of Lane Bryant effective Feb. 18. Heasley joins Lane Bryant division after six years as president and CEO of The Limited. (The Limited has announced a search for a new chief executive.)

During her time with The Limited, Heasley revamped store product lines; introduced new brand positioning; launched e-commerce; commissioned a new store design; introduced a new plus-size brand, inaugurated a new national advertising campaign and returned The Limited to sustained profitability for the first time in 17 years.

In addition to The Limited, Heasley has held numerous senior leadership roles at Timberland, Limited Brands, Inc. and CVS.

David Jaffe, president and CEO of the Ascena Retail Group, commented: “A very focused search process was conducted and the organization was able to attract a number of highly qualified candidates. Linda is the ideal person to lead Lane Bryant. She has a track record of impressive business results, an engaging and collaborative style, and a passion for the customer.”

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OPERATIONS

Retailers back Marketplace Fairness Act

BY Marianne Wilson

Arlington, Va. — The Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA) applauded reintroduction of federal legislation introduced today that closes the decades-old loophole that gives special treatment to online-only retailers.

In a letter to Senate and House sponsors of the Marketplace Fairness Act, RILA EVP for public affairs Katherine Lugar, highlighted the need for a level playing field: "The retail industry has always been fiercely competitive with merchants competing every day for consumer dollars based on price, value, services and other factors. But today, Main Street merchants compete on a playing field that has been skewed against them due to a loophole that allows online-only retailers to evade collecting state sales taxes. This practice has given these sellers a perceived price advantage of up to 10%, a competitive edge that results in government policy picking winners and losers in the free market."

Encouraging lawmakers to act in 2013 on this important priority for the retail industry, Lugar touted the legislation’s broad bipartisan appeal and its importance to local communities: "This state’s rights approach has the blessing of governors and state legislators throughout the country, in addition to the Main Street merchants who invest locally by hiring employees, paying property taxes and contributing to their communities."

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