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January 10, 2019

Destination Maternity taps transformation officer for turnaround

By Beth Wright

US mum-and-baby retailer Destination Maternity has appointed Doug Goeke to the newly created role of chief transformation officer as part of its turnaround efforts, along with a new CFO and COO whose remit includes sourcing.

The ailing company, which announced plans to restructure its corporate product and sourcing teams in November, says Goeke brings “extensive financial, operational, and turnaround experience” and will provide leadership and oversight of its multi-year strategic plan, Destination->Forward.

Most recently, Goeke served as senior vice president and general manager of support services North America at Babcock International Group Plc.

In addition, Destination Maternity has also appointed Dave Helkey as its new chief financial officer and COO. Helkey, who will be reporting to CEO Marla Ryan, succeeds David Stern who stepped down in August of last year.

In his new role, Helkey will oversee the company’s finance, accounting, IT, real estate, inventory management, sourcing, human resources, legal and warehouse/logistic departments. He most recently served as chief financial Officer and COO of Things Remembered, a privately held omni-channel retail company with 440 stores in the US and Canada.

“We are pleased to have an executive of Dave’s calibre joining Destination Maternity. We believe Dave’s experience and successful track record in retail, both online and in store, along with his operations management and capital markets experience make him ideally suited to fill the role of CFO and COO,” said Ryan.

“We are also pleased to bring Doug Goeke and his extensive international and domestic expertise leading company turnarounds to our leadership team. Doug has a vast amount of experience creating value through strategic performance improvements across business segments, which will be invaluable to his efforts to oversee and support the advancement of our multi-year strategic plan, Destination->Forward.”

Helkey added: “I am honoured to join Ms Ryan and the rest of the Destination Maternity team in what I believe is a pivotal moment in the company’s growth trajectory. look forward to building on the significant progress that has already been made positioning the company for profitable and sustainable growth and positively contributing to the company’s strategic plan, Destination->Forward.”

In its third quarter, the retailer saw its quarterly net loss narrow to US$4.1m from $7.5m a year earlier, while net sales fell 3.7% to $92.8m from $96.4m.

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