Saks Turns to Harrods For New Leadership
Harrods, it could be argued, is the industry’s most iconic department store, attracting visitors from all over the globe. Will the chief merchant who helped advance Harrods’ status as an "international destination for luxury" shoppers be able to do the same across the pond here in the U.S.?
Yesterday, it was announced that Marigay McKee, Harrods’ chief merchant, would become president of Saks once Hudson’s Bay Co. completed the deal to acquire the chain.
Jennifer de Winter, current EVP and director of stores at Saks, will become the chief merchandising officer at Saks Fifth Avenue reporting to Ms. McKee.
Ms. Mckee told Women’s Wear Daily that at Harrods she focused on leaving customers and her teams "breathless."
While looking to do the same at Saks, she acknowledged her role would be different. "It’s working to position those brands in the right places, in the right environment. It’s making sure the right people are in the right remits, but this is an opportunity to [undertake] a transformational evolution of an already well-established, iconic American brand," she told WWD.
Harrods endorsed Ms. McKee’s career step. A company statement published on The Telegraph website said she was "instrumental in developing Harrods’ exceptional department and brand portfolio" and had left "behind a very strong team and an inspirational legacy."
Hudson’s Bay is committed to making Ms. McKee a success including spending $200 million to renovate the Saks’ flagship store on Fifth Avenue in New York.
- Hudson’s Bay Hires Harrods Chief Merchant McKee for Saks – Bloomberg News
- Harrods boss poised to join Saks Fifth Avenue – The Telegraph
- HBC’s Richard Baker Builds Team at Saks Fifth Avenue – WWD.com (sub. required)
What will it take for Marigay McKee to be successful at Saks? What changes would you expect her to make? Will the move from London to New York be a problem?