American Apparel is in a bit of a sticky situation with founder and former CEO Dov Charney, who has been fired from his leadership role, but remains a part of the company as a consultant, at least for the time being. As WWD puts it, the circumstances have "a 'can’t live with him, can’t live without him' flavor."
Until his role becomes more clearly defined (or he is let go) and a permanent CEO is found, the company on Monday confirmed the hiring of a new interim CEO, Scott Brubaker, according to Reuters. The news coincides with the resignation of John Lutrell, who has been serving as interim CEO and CFO since June. He is being replaced as CFO by Hassan Natha, who has worked at Nike and Jones Soda Inc.
Brubaker comes from turnaround firm Alvarez & Marsal, which, WWD reports, has been working with AA for weeks. It was brought in by Standard General, the investor that now shares control of 43 percent of the company with Dov Charney after Charney borrowed nearly $20 million with the intention of using it to buy back control of American Apparel. (Charney and Standard General have since agreed not to buy any more shares.)
According to the Alvarez & Marsal website, Brubaker's experience lies in "business diagnostics, plan development and financial strategies for corporate turnarounds, acquisitions and restructurings." It's a skill set debt-ridden American Apparel could undoubtedly use, and a sign that change is on the horizon for the retailer, depending on if and how Charney influences things.