Ex-Arcadia marketing man takes on Euro role at shoe brand CAT

Footwear brand CAT has appointed Richard Smith, former marketing controller for clothing retail group Arcadia, as European marketing director.

Smith, along with group marketing director Steven Sharp, left Arcadia at the end of last year following the clothing retail group’s takeover by retail entrepreneur Philip Green (MW December 19, 2002).

Smith claims the CAT brand has been languishing for the past year, adding that his “role will be to rejuvenate the brand”.

It is understood that almost half of CAT-branded footwear is sold in Europe. The brand, inspired by Caterpillar earth-moving equipment, bears Caterpillar’s yellow logo.

Smith begins his new role at Wolverine Europe, which manages the CAT footwear licence in Europe, on January 20. Wolverine Europe was set up as a joint venture by Wolverine World Wide, owner of the CAT footwear licence, and managing director Stephen Palmer, founder of Overland, the previous holder of European licence for the brand, which was dissolved in 2002.

Smith will report to Palmer and be responsible for marketing CAT-branded shoes across Europe. He refuses to be drawn on the size of his marketing budget and whether he will appoint an advertising agency, saying that it is “far too early”.

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