September 15, 2009, 12:00 AM

Coldwater Creek replaces its CEO

In the wake of falling sales across all channels, Coldwater Creek has named co-founder Dennis Pence to replace Daniel Griesemer as CEO. In Q2, web sales fell 20.8%, while total revenue and retail sales fell 6.7% and 3.1%, respectively.

Katie Evans

Managing Editor, International Research

In the wake of declining sales across all channels, including the web, Coldwater Creek Inc. has appointed its co-founder as president and CEO.

Coldwater Creek, No. 70 in the Internet Retailer Top 500 Guide, announced yesterday that CEO Daniel Griesemer has resigned from the company. To replace Griesemer, Coldwater Creek has named co-founder and chairman Dennis Pence as CEO, effective immediately.

Pence co-founded Coldwater Creek in 1984 as a catalog company and served as CEO from 1984 through December 2000 and then again from September 2002 until October 2007, the retailer says.

“This brand, now 25 years of age, has significant opportunities for substantial growth,” says Pence. “The board of directors has asked me to return as our leader in order to accelerate the timelines for this growth, and for a return to long-term profitability, which our shareholders so rightfully expect. I look forward to moving expeditiously and will provide further detail as to our plans for future growth in the months to come."

Griesemer, who joined Coldwater Creek in 2001 as senior vice president and general manager of retail and was named CEO in October 2007, earned total compensation of about $2 million in 2008, including a base salary of $725,000, according to the retailer’s latest proxy statement filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Griesemer also is eligible for a severance package worth up to $2.4 million, according to the proxy document.

Pence takes over Coldwater Creek at a time when the company’s financial performance is sagging. For the second quarter ended Aug. 1:

  • Web sales declined 20.8% to $31.2 million from $39.4 million.
  • Total sales decreased 6.7% to $225.2 million from $241.4.
  • The web accounted for 13.9% of total revenue compared with 16.3% in the second quarter of 2008.
  • Retail sales decreased 3.2% to $183.4 million from $189.4 million.
  • Comparable-store sales decreased 10.2%.
  • Catalog sales declined 16.5% to $10.6 million from $12.7 million.
  • Net loss for the second quarter was $4.9 million compared with net income of $3.1 million in the second quarter of 2008.
For the first two quarters of fiscal 2009:
  • Web sales declined 24.7% to $77.6 million from $103.1 million.
  • Total sales decreased 11.5% to $453.6 million from $512.5 million.
  • Retail sales decreased 5.9% to $354.1 million from $376.2 million.
  • Catalog sales declined 34% to $21.9 million from $33.2 million.
  • Net loss for the second quarter was $12.5 million compared with a net loss of $6.1 million in the second quarter of 2008.


Sign In to Make a Comment

Comments are moderated by Internet Retailer and can be removed.

Not a member? Signup for free today!




Relevant Commentary


Jason Squardo / Mobile Commerce

Five tips for achieving high mobile search rankings

Searches on mobile devices will soon exceed those on computers, Google says. Retailers that keep ...


Sergio Pereira / B2B E-Commerce

Quill turns to its B2B customers for new ideas

Coming in April is a new section of that will let customers and Quill ...