Gary Friedman will share leadership with Carlos Alberini.
Thad Rueter , Senior Editor
What goes around sometimes comes around—in this case, Gary Friedman’s return to Restoration Hardware Inc. as co-CEO. He rejoins Carlos Alberini in that role, and also becomes chairman of the retailer’s board of directors.
Restoration Hardware is No. 107 in the Internet Retailer Top 500 Guide. The company, which in 2007 began transforming from what the guide calls “a middle-of-the-road housewares and home furnishings retailer into a store and web merchant catering to affluent shoppers,” last year took in e-commerce sales of nearly $240.8 million, up 27% from the previous year, according to Internet Retailer research.
Friedman was the chief operating officer of Williams-Sonoma Inc., No. 22 in the Top 500, before taking over as Restoration CEO in 2001. He held the chairman and co-CEO position between June 2010 and October 2012. Alberini then replaced him as sole CEO. Restoration Hardware gave no immediate indication of why it returned to the two-person arrangement.
In announcing the personnel changes, Restoration Hardware also said today it would buy Friedman’s venture, Hierarchy, and rebrand it as RH Atelier, which will focus on “luxury apparel, accessories, footwear, and jewelry, and be integrated and launched on the RH platform.”
“During the last few years, Gary and I have built an incredible partnership,” Alberini says. “Gary is a visionary with amazing talents who has led the extraordinary transformation of RH into one of the leading luxury brands in the market today. On behalf of our leadership team, I am thrilled to welcome Gary back into this role and look forward to the opportunity to continue this journey together.”