Company News: American Apparel, Puma, American Airlines, NBC, General Mills
• American Apparel fired founder Dov Charney and named as its new CEO Paula Schneider, who’s led a number of fashion brands, including BCBG Max Azria. Thirty American Apparel executives wrote to the board, urging it to reconsider the decision. The dismissal capped a six-month saga that began with Charney’s suspension for allegedly violating sexual harassment rules and using company funds to pay travel expenses for family members. Charney’s attorney has called the allegations “baseless.” During his suspension, Charney served as a paid consultant to the company.
• Puma hired pop singer Rihanna as a brand ambassador and creative director in a multiyear deal intended to help turn around its slipping sneaker sales. The company reported a 6.5 percent slide in revenue in the past two quarters. Controlling shareholder Kering has explored a sale of the brand, Bloomberg News reported.
• American Airlines announced a revised frequent-flyer program that will soon make it one of the few big carriers to continue granting rewards based on distance traveled rather than on the cost of a ticket. The move could woo more discount flyers to its flights. Those traveling in first class and business class will receive bonus mileage.
• NBC cut the cord. The network is streaming broadcasts on its website as they air on TV for pay-TV customers. The company plans to expand the offering to mobile devices early next year.
• General Mills reported a 37 percent drop in profit for the recent quarter, as U.S. consumers increasingly turned down cereal and passed on baked goods. Sales fell 3.4 percent in the period, to $4.7 billion. One bright spot: yogurt.