Week In Review
David’s Bridal announced that Lizzy Ellingson would be the bridal–and–special occasion apparel company’s first chief digital experience officer. Ellingson will lead the digital transformation of the brand, based in Conshohocken, Pa. She will report to Kelly Cook, the company’s chief marketing officer. “When we think about everyone who wants to seize the moment with the perfect dress, we think experience, we think digital, we think magical moments,” Cook said. “Lizzy has a vision for all three.”
Summersalt is a St. Louis–based direct-to-consumer travel-wear brand. It recently announced that it had raised $17.3 million in a series B round of funding led by Mercato Partners. The new funding will help the brand build new apparel categories. Summersalt started business in 2017 and offers eco-friendly, affordable, size-inclusive swimwear. It also has recently unveiled an apparel collection that includes cashmere, packable jackets and wrinkle-free pants.
Emanuel Ungaro died Dec. 21 at age 86. The French designer was considered one of the last independent couturiers to run an independent fashion house. Ungaro started his career working with legendary designers Cristóbal Balenciaga and André Courrèges. In the 1960s, Ungaro increasingly developed his own fashion work and styles and later had clients such as Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, Catherine Deneuve and Britney Spears. In 2005, Ungaro sold his fashion business to venture capitalist Asim Abdullah for $84 million.
QVC founder Joseph M. Segel passed away Dec. 21 at age 88. A career entrepreneur, in 1964 he founded the commemorative coin company Franklin Mint. In 1986, he put together the retail network QVC, which can be accessed by 380 million homes on 15 television networks as well as on 11 websites and by 10 million Facebook viewers, according to a QVC statement. Segel retired from QVC in 1993 and continued to advise it for a decade. Mike George, president and CEO of QVC, said Segel’s ideas on retail continue to influence the company and the wider world. “He was a visionary whose ideas changed the way the world shops,” George said. “He instilled the importance of customer focus and putting the customer first in everything we do. These founding values and Joe’s trailblazing spirit are still very much a part of who we are today.”
Barollo, an Italian bespoke footwear company, recently announced a limited-edition footwear collection called Red Shoe. The dress shoe was inspired by Patrice Banks, an engineer who switched careers and became a car mechanic to change the auto-repair industry, which has traditionally been overwhelmingly staffed by men. In 2016, Banks opened the Girls Auto Clinic, an auto-repair center entirely staffed by women. It’s located in Upper Darby, Pa., about a half-hour drive from Philadelphia. Since then, Banks has become an in-demand speaker who has written a guide to auto maintenance and inspired a shoe that features a heel reminiscent of a mechanic’s wrench. Barollo said that production on the shoe will begin in February. A portion of the proceeds will benefit the Girls Auto Clinic.