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Oxford's CEO Declares Retirement

Zacks Equity Research

Clothing company, Oxford Industries, Inc. (OXM) recently announced that its chief executive officer (CEO) J. Hicks Lanier intends to retire at the end of 2012, after successfully leading the company for almost 35 years. However, even after his retirement as CEO, he will remain associated with the company as the chairman of the board.

J. Hicks Lanier, 72, is the son of the previous CEO, and has served the company for 48 years, playing a crucial role in the development of the Oxford. He has successfully steered the company from all the challenges and now shall leave it in a profitable position.

After Mr. Lanier retires, Oxford’s president and a current member of the board, Thomas C. Chubb III, will take charge as CEO from Jan 1, 2013.

Chubb, 48, started at Oxford as a summer intern in 1988 and joined the company full time as an in-house attorney in 1989. He was promoted to general counsel in 1999. He became the executive vice president in 2004. In 2009, he was promoted to his present position as Oxford’s president. He was elected to the company's board in June, 2012. Thus, Chubb has an association of 24 years with the company and has played a key role in the company’s strategic and operational plans. Moreover, he has also helped Oxford move toward a more brand oriented growth.

Management remains optimistic regarding Chubb’s appointment and expects the maker of Tommy Bahama, Lilly Pulitzer and other clothing brands, to achieve new heights under his leadership. The company has surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimates in the past 15 quarters, except one, and we expect Chubb to maintain the trend in the coming years.

Atlanta, Georgia-based Oxford Industries primarily deals in the designing, manufacturing, marketing and sale of consumer apparel products in the United States. The company which competes with Ralph Lauren Corporation (RL) currently carries a Zacks #2 Rank, implying a short-term ‘Buy’ rating on the stock. We are maintaining our long-term ‘Neutral’ recommendation on the stock.

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