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Earlier this week, Ralph Lauren announced he was stepping down as CEO of the company after 48 years. Lauren will continue to be the chief designer, however taking the reins on the business side is former Old Navy and H&M executive Stefan Larsson. Lauren explains in a letter to his employees why he decided to put in a new CEO in place after successfully building one of the largest global fashion empires.
As the Company has grown globally, it has been clear to me that we needed to add strength. I have recognized great talent throughout my life and I have waited for the right moment to make someone CEO. My job is to think about the future and how to move forward, and I am confident that Stefan Larsson will be a wonderful business partner to help carry out this shared vision. As the largest shareholder, I will continue to nurture and grow this company.
The iconic American designer also says that he hopes the letter "lay to rest any misconceptions about what some of the press reported yesterday" and asserts that he is "not stepping down, nor am I stepping back. I am stepping up."
You can read the full memo below.