Former GNC Chief Executive Officer Josh Burris is taking on the CEO reins at teen apparel retailer Rue21, effective April 3, according to a company spokesperson.
Burris will replace Bill Brand, who announced his intention to step down just this month, according to a company press release.
Burris left GNC in January after two years as CEO. His quarter-century of retail experience includes stints at Abercrombie & Fitch, Hollister, DKNY, Karl Lagerfeld Paris, Calvin Klein Performance, Wilsons Leather and GH Bass & Co, among others.
Rue21 is working on a turnaround at a tough time for apparel retail, though the segment saw among the healthiest sales jumps in the industry last month.
The retailer, specializing in affordable clothing for teens, entered and exited bankruptcy in 2017 amid a wave of Chapter 11 filings by mall-based retailers; more recently the company worked with lenders to shore up its finances ahead of the holidays last year, after reportedly mulling a restructuring.
About two years ago the company, citing rising sales, announced it would continue to expand its footprint.
Vuk Djunic, a partner at Blue Torch Capital, said that Burris’ track record would help the retailer in its current turnaround. Blue Torch Capital is a middle market direct lender that works with companies that need capital support for growth, acquisitions, operational challenges or financial distress.
"Josh has decades of experience transforming popular consumer-facing brands which makes him best equipped to lead Rue21 into its next chapter,” Djunic said in a statement.