TITLE: Chairman and chief executive officer.
COMPANY: PVH Corp.
NOMINATED FOR: At the height of Hurricane Sandy’s wrath in October, Chirico finalized a blockbuster agreement to acquire Warnaco Group Inc. for $2.9 billion. The deal is the latest game-changing move by PVH in its steady ascent into the top ranks of the world’s biggest apparel companies, pushing its combined total revenues to more than $8 billion. The purchase brings Warnaco’s Calvin Klein underwear and jeans businesses — representing 36 percent of all Calvin Klein sales and 40 percent of its licensing revenue — into the PVH fold and consolidates the megabrand, owned by PVH, under a single company. Buying Warnaco also adds crucial operating infrastructure in Asia and Latin America, regions where PVH was less developed, and creates a global platform for PVH to build upon, including a strong base in Europe stemming from its 2010 acquisition of Tommy Hilfiger, also spearheaded by Chirico. Warnaco’s Calvin Klein business is being folded into PVH’s Calvin Klein division, overseen by president Tom Murry, while its Speedo, Warner’s and Olga brands are being tacked onto PVH’s heritage division, which encompasses Izod, Van Heusen and Bass.
Tommy Hilfiger has flourished under PVH control and in the first half of 2012, the reinvigorated brand helped drive company earnings ahead 43.9 percent to $180.8 million, while revenue increased 2.2 percent to $2.76 billion. While PVH has a way to go to catch up to industry leader VF Corp.’s more than $12 billion in sales, few executives have been as savvy and determined in their acquisition strategy as Chirico, not even letting a megastorm get in his way.