Ralph Lauren is stepping down as CEO of the company he founded, and handing the title over to Stefan Larsson. Larsson has had a hugely successful career in sales and is known for taking companies to the next level. His resume includes being the most recent president of Old Navy, and previously, a significant influencer behind H&M. Lauren will not be leaving the company entirely, as he will now act as the company’s executive chairman and chief creative officer.
According to WWD, Larsson sat down with Lauren and described the inspiring first meeting, stating:
“I had dinner with Ralph, the most iconic American fashion designer,” he said. “Our meeting had a big impact on me; I think we started speaking dreams minutes into the dinner. Dreams and realizing that Ralph has made more in his life so far than anybody can ever dream of and here he is, speaking about growing the business, speaking about generations, speaking about stories. And I was just moved by that.”
While it seems clear that Larsson and Lauren connect on a number of levels and both parties are in favor of the new transition, Larsson’s move is quite a loss for Old Navy. In the meantime, Jill Stanton will temporarily lead Old Navy.