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Restoration Hardware reorganizes to create new product lines

CORTE MADERA, Calif. — Restoration Hardware is reorganizing, shuffling top executives as it creates a new corporation to develop clothing and other new lines of merchandise outside of its core high-end home products.

The Top 100 company said the move is designed "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."

The new company, called Hierarchy, will develop lines, "including apparel, accessories, footwear and jewelry, many of which will be complementary to the company's new product development strategy," the Corte Madera, Calif.-based retailer said. Restoration Hardware will have the exclusive right to acquire each new business "when they reach an appropriate level of maturity and profitability," it said.

Gary Friedman, current chairman and co-CEO of Restoration Hardware, will become the founder, chairman, and CEO of Hierarchy, controlling the business while Restoration Hardware takes a minority stake.

Carlos Alberini, co-CEO of Restoration, will become Restoration's sole CEO. He joined the retailer in 2010 and "has played a major role in transforming the company into a leading luxury brand," according to a release.

Friedman will continue to be involved with Restoration Hardware in an advisory role, serving as creator and curator with a focus on strategy, creative, and design direction. He also will remain the largest individual shareholder and will be chairman emeritus, serving as a non-director board advisor.

J. Michael Chu, a managing partner of Catterton Partners, the private equity firm that jointly controls Restoration with private equity firm Tower Three Partners, will become Restoration's chairman.

In the release, Chu said the announcement "represents yet another significant milestone in the extraordinary transformation of Restoration Hardware."

"The new structure provides a creative and efficient way to develop new businesses," he said. "Gary Friedman, who transformed Restoration Hardware into an admired lifestyle brand in the luxury home market, has demonstrated the ability to re-conceptualize and build some of the most successful brands in the industry, and his continued efforts to drive innovation at Restoration Hardware will be invaluable."

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