The company confirmed that they have named Rebekka Bay creative director and executive vice president for Gap Global Design, effective Oct. 1. Bay is best known for the successful H&M-owned brand COS, which she "conceptualized, developed and launched." She was creative director there from 2006-2011, when she left for Danish fashion house Bruuns Bazaar, where she's been creative director until now. At Gap, she'll be responsible for the Women’s, Men’s, 1969, Accessories and Body lines.
“We’ve taken the time to identify the right creative leader for Gap and we’ve found that in Rebekka,” said Stephen Sunnucks, president, Gap Inc. international in a release (via BusinessWire). “We’re confident that Rebekka’s approach to design along with her considerable international experience will allow her to help us build upon the momentum we’re delivering in the business today.”
Is Bay a better fit for Gap than Robinson? Perhaps. While Robinson's background was in high fashion, Bay oversaw a mass produced, international brand--and a successful, stylish one at that. However, the fact that Gap has henceforth been a pretty distinctly American brand, and Bay's experience is all in Europe, could be seen as an issue.
Gap has definitely seen its ups and (mostly) downs over the past few years, and made many, many attempts to refocus and get sales back up, most of which have been unsuccessful. Bay's design talents, coupled with her understanding of how to focus one brand within a conglomerate of brands, could prove quite beneficial to Gap.