Coach Names Vevers Creative Director to Succeed Krakoff

Coach Inc. named Stuart Vevers as its new executive creative director to replace Reed Krakoff and help steer the handbag maker’s evolution into a lifestyle brand.

Vevers joins New York-based Coach from the leather goods brand Loewe, owned by LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton SA, where he has been creative director since 2008, Coach said in a statement today. Vevers previously held that role at U.K. handbag maker Mulberry Group Plc.

Coach has made a number of top executive changes this year, including naming Victor Luis as intended chief executive officer. It is trying to become a full lifestyle brand that outfits customers from head to toe in a defensive move as rivals such as Michael Kors Holdings Ltd. and Tory Burch LLC challenge its dominance of the handbag market.

Krakoff decided not to renew his contract, which expires in June 2014, to concentrate exclusively on his namesake brand, Coach said in April. The handbag maker said at the time it was exploring strategic options for the Reed Krakoff brand, which may involve a sale to a group in which Krakoff would participate.

Coach said in February that Lew Frankfort is relinquishing the title of CEO to Luis next year. Frankfort will remain as chairman.

Coach fell 2.3 percent to $55.27 in New York today. The shares rose 0.4 percent this year, trailing the 10 percent gain for the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index.