GAP INC. NAMES INTERNATIONAL FASHION DESIGNER SIMON KNEEN TO TOP DESIGN POSITION FOR BANANA REPUBLIC
SAN FRANCISCO – Jan. 3, 2008 -- Gap Inc. (NYSE: GPS) announced today that Simon Kneen, a fashion leader with more than 25 years of experience in key design roles for apparel brands in the United States and Europe, will become executive vice president of design and creative director for Banana Republic, effective Jan. 9. In this role, Mr. Kneen will set the product direction for Banana Republic apparel and accessories, as well as set the overall creative direction for the brand.
“Simon has a tremendous ability to creatively guide a brand, experience delivering a consistent aesthetic across all expressions of the brand, and a proven track record of fostering strong creative teams,” said Jack Calhoun, president of Banana Republic. “After talking with dozens of fantastic candidates, it’s clear that Simon is a great fit for Banana Republic.”
For the past five years, Mr. Kneen served as creative design director for the Retail Brand Alliance, where he led the creative vision for such well-known brands as Brooks Brothers and Adrienne Vittadini. He was the first to design a fashion collection for men’s and women’s at Brooks Brothers, and was part of the leadership team that helped reposition the brand. While at the Retail Brand Alliance, he was also responsible for designing the collections under the Casual Corner label from 2003 until 2005, prior to the brand’s sale.
From 2001 to 2003, Mr. Kneen was creative director for Maska, the Italian fashion house known for its exclusive couture collection and fashionable ready-to-wear line. Prior to that, he was head designer, Pret-a Porter, for Maison Balmain, based in Paris. Mr. Kneen also led his own successful design firm and produced the Simon Kneen Collection, a line of suiting, separate, knitwear and accessories sold through luxury apparel retailers in Italy.
Mr. Kneen, 46, will report to Mr. Calhoun in this new role.
About Gap Inc. and Banana Republic
Gap Inc. is a leading international specialty retailer offering clothing, accessories and personal care products for men, women, children and babies under the Gap, Banana Republic, Old Navy and Piperlime brand names. Fiscal 2006 sales were $15.9 billion. Gap Inc. operates more than 3,100 stores in the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, France, Ireland and Japan. In addition, Gap inc. is expanding its international presence with franchise agreements for Gap and Banana Republic in Asia and the Middle East.
Banana Republic is an accessible luxury brand, offering high-quality apparel and accessories collections for men and women. Delivering elevated design and luxurious fabrications at approachable prices, Banana Republic has been credited with helping make fashion more accessible. The brand offers elevated essentials and sophisticated seasonal collections of accessories, shoes, personal care products and intimate apparel. From work to casual occasions, Banana Republic offers covetable, uncomplicated style.
For more information, please visit gapinc.com.