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Gap makes merchandising and creative hires to boost product team

Gap, the US casualwear chain, has hired Nike global apparel vice president Jill Stanton and Uniqlo senior vice president merchandising Liz Meltzer, boosting its top level product team.

Stanton, who leaves Nike after more than a decade, takes on the newly-created role of creative advisor for Gap’s family offering Old Navy to help deliver a more “consistent” product.

She will work with the design and merchandising departments providing “a fresh perspective and insights to the brand”.

Meltzer, meanwhile, takes up the role of senior vice president of Gap International merchandising, overseeing Asia, Europe and other regions outside of North America. She replaces international merchant Kevin Komos, who was based in the UK.

Both Meltzer and Stanton will be based in New York at Gap’s Global Creative Centre and will start next month.

“Boosting our already-strong creative talent is a key focus in 2012,” said Glenn Murphy, chairman and chief executive of Gap Inc. 

He added: “On the heels of Tracy Gardner coming back to Gap, we are thrilled that Jill Stanton will bring her talent and proven business experience as creative advisor to Old Navy to help us deliver consistently great product. Liz Meltzer brings her proven track record in global merchandising to our Gap Global Creative Center in New York, with a deep understanding of customer needs in the geographies that present the largest opportunity for us going forward.”

Last May, the company’s much-lauded vice-president of Gap global design, Patrick Robinson, departed. He is still to be replaced.

Prior to this, Pam Wallack, president of Gap Adult North America, was appointed head of Gap’s Global Creative Centre based in New York, which aims to serve as a “global epicentre for creativity for Gap brand ”.

And last April, Gap centralised its overseas operations to London, promoting European president Stephen Sunnucks to international president. Leading the overseas division, Sunnucks plans to increase Gap’s overseas business from 13% to 30% of group sales by 2013.

Gap will report its fourth quarter and full year earnings later today.

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