Australian swimwear brand Seafolly has appointed Paul Kotrba, former commercial head at DKNY, as its new CEO. The appointment is set to further develop the global growth potential of the 42 year-old brand.
Originally from Vienna, Austria, Kotrba is an experienced global retail executive with over 15 years spent in New York City at Donna Karan and DKNY during the period of ownership under LVMH. There he successfully built brand equity by leading the execution of the groups’ commercial growth strategy across the US, Europe, Middle East and Asia.
“Paul’s appointment is another significant step in our journey in continuing to expand the brand that Peter and Anthony Halas have successfully built over the last four decades. Paul’s leadership and experience will be a huge asset to Seafolly in the next stage of growth and bring us closer to becoming the world’s most recognized brand in this exciting category,” says chairman and managing partner of the majority shareholder private equity group, L Catterton Asia, Ravi Thakran.
Paul Kotrba comments: “I am very much looking forward to joining the Seafolly team and for us to expand this powerful Australian brand across the globe. It is impressive what the founders and the management team have accomplished and to experience the loyal following the brand has, especially here in Australia. I believe there is now a real opportunity to build Seafolly into the world’s number one iconic swimwear and beach lifestyle brand.”
Founded in 1975 by Peter and Yvonne Halas, the Seafolly brand was led by Anthony Halas since 1998 when he became CEO, and subsequently grew the business across several international markets in Europe, North America and Asia. The brand has become synonymous with Australian beach lifestyle. The brand’s seasonal marketing campaigns feature high profile models such as Gigi Hadid, Miranda Kerr, Jessica Hart, Shanina Shaik and most recently Toni Garrn.
Seafolly is sold in over 2,700 doors in 41 countries through its own channels, leading retailers and major online sites. There are 33 Seafolly stores (22 in Australia, 7 in the US and 4 in Singapore). Seafolly also operates another premium swimwear and apparel resort brand, Miléa, and a chain of multi-brand swimwear stores under the Sunburn banner.