American Eagle Outfitters CFO to Step Down; AEO to Close Kids’ Brand

by Nate Hunter

Pittsburgh — American Eagle Outfitters’ CFO, Joan Hilson, is stepping down. In other AEO news, the company plans to close its children’s business, 77kids, which includes 22 stores.


Pittsburgh — American Eagle Outfitters, Inc.’s chief financial officer, Joan Hilson, is stepping down. An active search for a successor is currently underway. Hilson will work with the company through the end of July 2012 to ensure an orderly transition.

Effective immediately, Scott Hurd, AEO’s vice president and controller, will lead day-to-day management of the finance team, and assume the roles of interim principal accounting officer and interim principal financial officer until a successor is appointed.

“Joan has been a dedicated member of the AEO team for more than 6 years,” says Robert Hanson, chief executive officer. “On behalf of the company, I’d like to thank her for her contributions. I also appreciate Joan’s support during my transition and wish her all the best in her future endeavors.”

In other American Eagle Outfitters news, the company plans to exit its children’s business, 77kids, which includes 22 stores and an e-commerce site. The company is currently exploring options for the business, which include a full or partial disposition of assets to a third party.

“Although making this decision is disappointing, it is in the best interest of the company and our shareholders to prioritize and focus our efforts on businesses with the highest return potential,” Hanson says. “We thank the 77kids team for their hard work, passion and dedication.”

In fiscal 2011, the brand generated an after-tax loss of approximately $24 million on sales of $40 million. The company anticipates charges associated with the disposition of 77kids to be taken primarily in the second and third quarters, which will be disclosed as plans are finalized.

American Eagle Outfitters, Inc. is a leading global specialty retailer offering high-quality, on-trend clothing under its American Eagle Outfitters®, Aerie® and 77kids® brands. The company operates more than 1,000 stores in North America.

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SOURCE: American Eagle Outfitters, Inc.

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