Licensor Perry Ellis International has unveiled a leadership succession plan that will see founder and CEO George Feldenkreis step down after 50 years leading the company.
In a succession plan that PEI intends to implement at the beginning of the next fiscal year, Feldenkreis will step down from his current role as chief executive officer and chairman of the board, ceding the reins to his son Oscar Feldenkreis, who is currently serving as president and chief operating officer beginning Jan. 30, 2016.
After the transition, George Feldenkreis, who founded the company in 1967 and has served as CEO and chairman of the board since 1993, will take on the role of executive chairman of the board, continuing to be involved with strategic planning and the development of M&A, international, licensing and other growth opportunities
Oscar Feldenkreis has been involved in all aspects of the company's operations since joining the company full-time in 1980 and has served as president and chief operating officer since 1993.
"I am extremely proud of what we have accomplished over the past half century, particularly the value that we have created for all our stakeholders," says George Feldenkreis. "We have grown from being a small importer of guayaberas and childrenswear in 1967 to being a leading international designer and distributor of globally recognized apparel brands. I have worked closely with Oscar since he joined Perry Ellis 35 years ago and watched first-hand and with great pride the significant role he has played in the company's growth and success. I am very confident in his ability to lead the company as its new chief executive officer and drive the next era of disciplined growth and shareholder value creation."
"George Feldenkreis is a great American success story," says Joseph P. Lacher, lead independent director, Perry Ellis Board. "With close to a billion dollars in annual revenues today, Perry Ellis originated as a small family business that George, an émigré from Cuba with a young family and no money to his name, started more than 50 years ago after fleeing Fidel Castro's rise to power. In a remarkable display of commitment, determination, integrity and ingenuity, George built Perry Ellis into an apparel industry powerhouse. He was one of the early pioneers in international sourcing and development, making his first business trip to Japan in the early 1960s–in fact, it was George's early vision with respect to the future of Asia that gave him the idea of building his company and creating the network of overseas offices that went on to become one of the best sourcing organizations in the industry. Today, many of the brands that make up the Perry Ellis portfolio are synonymous with American fashion."
Among those brands are Perry Ellis, Laundry by Shelli Segal, Rafaella, Ben Hogan, Original Penguin by Munsingwear, Grand Slam and Farah.