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Benetton to replace CEO with joint managers

business Updated: Mar 18, 2010 20:26 IST

AP
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Apparel maker Benetton said on Thursday that it was turning over traditional CEO duties to two managers next month after a 21 percent drop in earnings last year.

The board is to vote April 22 on turning over management of the company jointly to Franco Furno and Biagio Chiarolanza.

Furno, who has previously worked at Gucci, Marzotto and the Benetton Group, will head commercial product and human resources while Chiarolanza, who has 20 years of experience at Benetton, will be in charge of finance, the company said in a statement.

They replace CEO Gerolamo Caccia Dominioni, a former Warner Brothers music executive, who was hired three years ago. Benetton said his term is expiring.

The maker of casual clothing for men, women and children reported a 21 percent drop in earnings last year due to a slowdown in consumer spending. Net income for 2008 was euro122 million ($166 million), down from euro155 million a year earlier.

Benetton forecast a modest recovery in consumption this year, saying it expects orders for next fall/winter collection to be better than those for spring/summer. The company is cutting costs to keep operating profit stable.