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May 17, 2018
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Fosun names Eran Cohen CEO of St. John Knits

May 17, 2018

China's Fosun International announced on Wednesday the appointment of Eran Cohen to chief executive officer of US luxury label, St. John Knits.

Cohen succeeds Bruce Fetter, who has retired after more than 15 years with the company.

Eran Cohen - PetSmart

Commencing CEO duties from May 1, Cohen comes to Southern California's St. John Knits with thirty years experience across the retail and fashion industries.

He most recently served as PetSmart's executive vice president of customer experience, after stints at New York & Company, where he served as chief marketing officer and executive vice president, and Payless ShoeSource, working as senior vice president and chief marketing officer.

Fosun in a statement harked Cohen's "deep understanding of retail, including e-commerce, digital and mobile, customer experience, and data and analytics."

“Eran has invaluable experience in marketing and consumer experience, with exceptional management skills," said Fosun Fashion Group president Joann Cheng. 

"We believe he can unlock the potential of St. John, driving acceleration and growth via a strategic focus on the demands of current and new clients. Eran comes to St. John with a proven track record of success building and engaging teams and in driving global growth.”

In response to his appointment, Cohen said that he plans to build on St. John Knits' "iconic heritage in knitwear, bringing innovation in design and product, providing dynamic experiences at retail, wholesale and online, and delivering provocative and compelling content that speaks to the brand's current loyalists, while attracting new customer segments."

And he'll have two relatively new executive team members to help him bring the luxury apparel brand into this new phase of company evolution.

The Hong Kong-listed company has recently hired Laura Vazquez as EVP and chief merchant, which took place in November 2017, after stints with Belstaff, Jil Sander, and Adrienne Vittadini; and Tom Jarrold, who joined the company in March as SVP, marketing, branding and communications, after working with brands Armani Exchange, Ralph Lauren, and Coach.

Founded in 1962, St. John Knits is sold by high-end specialty retailers in 26 countries, 29 company-owned retail boutiques and through the brand's e-commerce site.

Fosun International, via its Fosun Fashion subsidiary, first acquired a minority stake in St. John Knits in 2013, which is a now a controlling stake.

Founded in 1992, Fosun's total assets exceed RMB530 billion (US$85 billion). 

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