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Shakeup At The Top Of Restoration Hardware

Corte Madera luxury home furnishings company announces Gary Friedman is stepping down as Co-CEO.

Restoration Hardware, a luxury home furnishings company rooted in Corte Madera, is going through a major redesign with its leadership.

Gary Friedman is stepping down as Chairman and Co-CEO of Restoration Hardware after an investigation revealed the 54-year-old had an inappropriate relationship with a 26-year-old female employee. She has since left the company and they are still in a relationship, according to the New York Times.

The purpose of the reorganization, according to a statement released by Restoration Hardware, is "to create a vehicle to incubate new lines of business to support the Company’s future growth, while enhancing the predictability and focus of the Company’s existing business model."

Restoration Hardware has an outlet in The Village shopping center in Corte Madera.

Friedman, Restoration Hardware's largest individual stakeholder, will start a new business. Hierarchy will develop new apparel lines sympathetic to Restoration Hardware's development strategy. He will "continue to be involved with Restoration Hardware in an exclusive advisory role, serving as Creator and Curator for Restoration Hardware with a focus on strategy, creative, and design direction," according to the statement.

Carlos Alberini, Co-CEO of Restoration Hardware, will become Restoration Hardware’s sole CEO and will lead all major functions of the business. J. Michael Chu, a Managing Partner of Catterton Partners, will assume the role of Chairman of the Board of Restoration Hardware.

Friedman commented, “Today’s announcement supports our goal and belief that we can curate a lifestyle well beyond the four walls of the home. It allows us to leverage our core capabilities to innovate, curate, and integrate new businesses and develop a brand that transcends typical models existing today. I am proud of the strong brand we have built, excited to pursue this new paradigm and partnership with Carlos, and passionate about imagining and creating a truly special business and brand.”

Alberini stated, “We have a great team of very passionate and committed people. We have accomplished a lot as an organization and we see big opportunities ahead. I am honored that the Board has entrusted me with this new role and I could not be happier to work with Gary to continue to build this amazing Company together.”

Gary Friedman was appointed Chairman and Co-Chief Executive Officer of Restoration Hardware in June 2010 and has served as the Company’s Chief Executive Officer since March 2001. Prior to joining the Company, from 1988 to 2001, Mr. Friedman worked for William-Sonoma, Inc.

Tracy August 23, 2012 at 07:45 AM
Resto has nice things but it's a bit too pricey for me.
Eric August 23, 2012 at 03:02 PM
I don't understand why he needs to step down? I don't believe either he or the girl were married. What's the issue? The age difference? The fact that they worked together and he was at a senior level? Bill Gates was in a relationship with Melinda when she worked in Microsoft's marketing group...
Tracy August 26, 2012 at 12:58 AM
See what happens when you don't keep your stick on the ice?
GAFlynn September 01, 2012 at 09:26 PM
The NY Times article of August 16th doesn't give a lot of information, but in the comments we see someone hired at a salary of $70,000 and in 6 weeks given a $10,000 bonus. Her qualifications were not clear, but it would seem that favorable treatment of this sort might have the possibility of creating a toxic workplace. This is in response to Eric and others who say "What's the big deal?" Perhaps it's not a big deal, but it doesn't seem fair to other workers who are likely paid less and perhaps are expected to work harder.
michael November 04, 2012 at 12:52 AM
So they fire their C.E.O. who has completely turned the company around right before the I.P.O. for having a consensual relationship with another adult? Pleeeeze, something is not Kosher here. We are certain it was a 26 y/o woman something makes me wonder about that.

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