- Building out its C-suite team, DTC bridal brand Birdy Grey has hired a new chief operating officer and chief technology officer, according to a Thursday announcement.
- Cat Chen has joined the company as COO. She succeeds Steve Zawada, Eloquii’s co-founder, who first joined Birdy Grey as COO in February and left the brand in June. The position has been vacant until now, the company told Retail Dive.
- The brand’s new chief technology officer, Brendan Hastings, will lead product, tech and e-commerce strategy for the company.
Birdy Grey has brought on two seasoned executives with experience in DTC and CPG brands as it continues to build out its team.
Chen comes to Birdy Grey with 19 years of consumer packaged goods experience and 11 years working with startups. She was one of the Honest Company’s first employees and led the operations team that helped the brand grow into a nine-figure company. As Birdy Grey’s COO, Chen will lead product sourcing, merchandising, inventory planning, fulfillment, transportation, customer service and analytics.
"Cat has deep operational expertise combined with amazing people leadership,” Monica Ashauer, co-founder and president of Birdy Grey, said in a statement. “She will have an enormous impact on Birdy Grey's next chapter of growth."
The COO position at Birdy Grey was open for three months after Zawada left the brand this summer. He subsequently teamed with a partner to open an Image Studios franchise, Zawada told Retail Dive. The national chain is an exclusive salon suite that provides modern, high-end salon studios at affordable rates to salon professionals.
Hastings spent the last seven years leading the tech, data and product teams at DTC period brand Thinx, assisting in the company’s acquisition by Kimberly-Clark.
"We are excited to welcome Brendan Hastings to Birdy Grey,” Grace Lee, Birdy Grey co-founder and CEO, in a statement. “He has a wealth of experience leading DTC product and technology teams and building innovative onsite shopping experiences, which makes him an excellent fit to lead Birdy Grey through our next phase of innovation and growth."
Founded in 2017 by Lee and Ashauer, Birdy Grey offers affordable bridesmaid dresses for under $100, as well as gifts and accessories for bridal parties. The company claims to have dressed over half a million bridesmaids since its launch about five years ago.