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August 21, 2014
10:07 EDTGESGuess falls after Chief Design Officer latest to leave
Shares of clothing designer and retailer Guess are falling after it announced last night that its Chief Design Officer had left the company. In a note to investors today, research firm Peiper Jaffray called the news "concerning." WHAT'S NEW: Guess last night announced that its Chief Design Officer, Sharleen Ernster, would leave the company, effective immediately. The company did not disclose a specific reason for her departure, but said that both the company and she agreed that she should leave. ANALYST REACTION: Piper Jaffray analyst Erinn Murphy wrote that she was "concerned" by continuing management turnover at Guess. The company's former Senior Vice President/General Merchandise Manager of North America left earlier this summer, and three executives departed between November 2012 and February 2013, Murphy reported. In the wake of the two recent departures, Guess' turnaround is likely to take longer than previously thought, according to Murphy, who kept a $25 price target and Neutral rating on the shares. WHAT'S NOTABLE: Murphy downgraded Guess to Neutral from Buy earlier this week, writing that disruptions to the company's U.S. business made it more difficult to predict when it would rebound. PRICE ACTION: In early trading, Guess sank 4.5% to $25.
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