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Buying Director

Kate Spade New York
Shibuya, Japan
Closing date
18 Jun 2024

Job Details

Since its launch in 1993 with a collection of six essential handbags, Kate Spade New York has always been colorful, bold, and optimistic. Today, it is a global lifestyle brand that designs extraordinary things for the everyday, delivering seasonal collections of handbags, ready-to-wear, jewelry, footwear, home décor, and more. Known for its rich heritage and unique brand DNA, Kate Spade New York offers a distinctive point of view and celebrates communities of women around the globe who live their perfectly imperfect lifestyles.

Kate Spade New York is part of the Tapestry portfolio - a global house of brands committed to stretching what's possible.

A member of the Tapestry family, we are part of a global house of brands that has unwavering optimism and is committed to being innovative and wholly inclusive. Visit Our People page to learn more about Tapestry's commitment to equity, inclusion, and diversity.

Title: Director of Buying  

Reports to: President - kate spade japan

Location: Tokyo

Primary Purpose:

The Director of Buying serves as a leadership team member of kate spade Japan (KSJ), working closely with the President and the leadership team (LT team) and implement key business and brand strategies to drive business and brand growth.

The Director of Buying, will lead the whole KSJ buying team responsible of developing, planning, and driving the business through product across Japan. This person will own the buying strategies for both mainline and outlet including the store fleet and digital channels. The role is responsible for the achievement of commercial objectives and realization of the brand goals by unleashing the potential of the brand through 10+ product categories. The director of buying will be working closely with the global merchandising team and other leaders including local cross functional leadership members.

The successful individual will leverage their proficiency in Buying to...
    • Drive strategic future of business & innovation by deeply connecting with the brand value, identifying market trends, assortment opportunities and understanding the customer.
    • Drive business by leveraging 10+ product categories for both mainline and outlet
    • Lead buying process from concept to completion. Influence product line arch, category assortments by analyzing product performance, customer feedback, consumer trend, competitive landscape and local market knowledge to global merchants/design.
    • Drive financial results and maximize revenue and gross margin. Manage OTB to meet financial targets at the SKU level for sales, inventory & margin
    • Work closely with Finance and Operation team to ensure that sell through and inventory turn goals are met and assortments by door including Ecom are maximized.
    • Manage SKU lifecycle from adoption to delete, re-plan and react in season and determine go forward strategy.
    • Partner with Marketing, Ecom, CX, Visual Merchandising, Store Operations and Field Team to create synergies among all consumer touch points to activate cohesive 360 storytelling.
    • Partner with field team, hold workshops, and solicit qualitative feedback on product, customers, store environments & competition.
    • Direct and drive monthly and weekly meeting, GTM process meetings as a core GTM leadership member.
    • Partner with Marketing and License member to drive collaboration activities.

The accomplished individual will possess...
    • Minimum of 10 years working experience including 5 years in buying or merchandising role for retail and Ecom in a global company. Experience running business functions other than merchandising/buying is a plus.
    • Fluent in both Japanese and English
    • Passion working with the team. Strong leadership skills with a proven success in motivating and developing team.
    • Deep understanding on Japanese fashion market. Understands the channel differences, customer behavior and unique needs.
    • Passion and interest in fashion/retail. Ability to balance risk and opportunity by maintaining the brands creativity/flexibility unique to fashion retail business.
    • Great balance between Magic and Logic. Have great product sensitivity but able to think and communicate logically.
    • Ability to build strong product strategies for the market. Excellent communication skill to present those strategies to global and local teams by leveraging quantitative data and qualitative feedback/ information.
    • Comfort with uncertainty. Demonstrates positive mindset and flexibility in addressing issues that are unique to fast-paced business.
    • Entrepreneurship to drive changes and innovation. Curious to new things and a fast learner. Demonstrates proactive and collaborate leadership style to others.

Our Competencies for All Employees
  • Courage : Doesn't hold back anything that needs to be said; provides current, direct, complete, and "actionable" positive and corrective feedback to others; lets people know where they stand; faces up to people problems on any person or situation (not including direct reports) quickly and directly; is not afraid to take negative action when necessary.
  • Creativity : Comes up with a lot of new and unique ideas; easily makes connections among previously unrelated notions; tends to be seen as original and value-added in brainstorming settings.
  • Customer Focus: Is dedicated to meeting the expectations and requirements of internal and external customers; gets first-hand customer information and uses it for improvements in products and services; acts with customers in mind; establishes and maintains effective relationships with customers and gains their trust and respect.
  • Dealing with Ambiguity : Can effectively cope with change; can shift gears comfortably; can decide and act without having the total picture; isn't upset when things are up in the air; doesn't have to finish things before moving on; can comfortably handle risk and uncertainty.
  • Drive for Results: Can be counted on to exceed goals successfully; is constantly and consistently one of the top performers; very bottom-line oriented; steadfastly pushes self and others for results.
  • Interpersonal Savvy : Relates well to all kinds of people, up, down, and sideways, inside and outside the organization; builds appropriate rapport; builds constructive and effective relationships; uses diplomacy and tact; can diffuse even high-tension situations comfortably.
  • Learning on the Fly: Learns quickly when facing new problems; a relentless and versatile learner; open to change; analyzes both successes and failures for clues to improvement; experiments and will try anything to find solutions; enjoys the challenge of unfamiliar tasks; quickly grasps the essence and the underlying structure of anything.

Our Competencies for All People Managers
  • Strategic Agility : Sees ahead clearly; can anticipate future consequences and trends accurately; has broad knowledge and perspective; is future oriented; can articulately paint credible pictures and visions of possibilities and likelihoods; can create competitive and breakthrough strategies and plans.
  • Developing Direct Reports and Others:Provides challenging and stretching tasks and assignments; holds frequent development discussions; is aware of each person's career goals; constructs compelling development plans and executes them; pushes people to accept developmental moves; will take on those who need help and further development; cooperates with the developmental system in the organization; is a people builder.
  • Building Effective Teams : Blends people into teams when needed; creates strong morale and spirit in theirteam; shares wins and successes; fosters open dialogue; lets people finish and be responsible for their work; defines success in terms of the whole team; creates a feeling of belonging in the team.

Kate Spade is an equal opportunity and affirmative action employer and we pride ourselves on hiring and developing the best people. All employment decisions (including recruitment, hiring, promotion, compensation, transfer, training, discipline and termination) are based on the applicant's or employee's qualifications as they relate to the requirements of the position under the consideration. These decisions are made without regard to age, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic characteristics, race, color, creed, religion, ethnicity, national origin, alienage, citizenship, disability, marital status, military status, pregnancy, or any other legally-recognized protected basis prohibited by applicable law. Visit Kate Spade at .


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