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bebe CEO resigns, effective immediately

BY Katherine Boccaccio

Brisbane, California — bebe stores CEO Steve Birkhold has left the company, effectively immediately, and an interim chief has been named to lead while a search for a permanent replacement is underway, said bebe stores on Thursday.

Following the sudden departure of Birkhold, the board appointed Jim Wiggett, currently CEO of Jackson Hole Group, as bebe’s interim CEO.

“We would like to thank Steve for his contributions as CEO, and we wish him well in his future endeavors,” said Manny Mashouf, chairman of the bebe board, in a statement.

Wiggett has been providing advisory services to the 227-store chain for the past five years. Prior to founding the Jackson Hole Group, a strategic consulting group, he held a number of executive positions with several high-profile companies, most recently Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton as executive VP and as president and CEO of Sephora.com.

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Bebe seeks CEO

BY CSA STAFF

Bebe’s Steve Birkhold has resigned as CEO, effective immediately. The board has appointed Jim Wiggett, currently CEO of Jackson Hole Group, as CEO while it starts a search for a permanent replacement.

“On behalf of the board of directors, we are excited to welcome Jim to the team. Jim is a highly accomplished executive, with proven leadership capabilities, retail and merchandising expertise and a wealth of strategic business knowledge, and we look forward to his insights into the strategic direction of the company,” said board chairman Manny Mashouf. “We would like to thank Steve for his contributions as CEO, and we wish him well in his future endeavors.”

Wiggett has been providing advisory services to the company for five years. He has nearly 40 years of retail, merchandising and business experience. Prior to founding the Jackson Hole Group, a strategic consulting group, Wiggett held a number of executive positions, most recently with Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton (LVMH). As EVP at LVMH, Wiggett provided leadership to the 10 operating companies within the Select Distribution Group and consulting support to many of the non-retail organizations. While at LVMH, he served as the president and CEO of Sephora.com, a subsidiary of LVMH. Prior to joining LVMH, Wiggett held senior positions with Duty Free Stores (DFS), the ITEL Corporation, Cambridge Plan International and R.H. Macy Corporation. In addition, he has served on a number of corporate boards, charitable boards and professional associations.

The company offered no additional details regarding Birkhold’s reasons for exiting.

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Restoration Hardware posts strong 1Q

BY Katherine Boccaccio

Corte Madera, California — Furniture and housewares retailer Restoration Hardware reported a profit of $1.8 million in the quarter ended May 3, compared with a loss of $161,000 last year. Results topped Wall Street expectations and prompted the company to raise its outlook for the year.

Revenue grew 22% to $366.3 million, from $301.3 million in the year-ago period. Wall Street predicted $346.7 million.

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