Crate and Barrel's CEO, Doug Diemoz, who is being sued by his former employer, Restoration Hardware, for stealing trade secrets and breaching contracts, is out after less than two years at the Northbrook, Ill.-based retailer. The company confirmed Friday that Doug Diemoz, who was recruited from Restoration Hardware to head Crate & Barrel in 2015, left last week. A spokeswoman declined to say why.
Total Retail's Take: While Crate and Barrel has said that Diemoz's departure has nothing to do with the Restoration Hardware lawsuit, I'm skeptical. Crate and Barrel seems intent on opening a food and beverage operation in its stores, a tactic first launched by Restoration Hardware, the lawsuit claims. The lawsuit also alleges that Crate and Barrel sought to hire Diemoz for his know-how to launch a similar program for the company. With the lawsuit still pending, perhaps Crate and Barrel's board decided to cut its losses and move on from Diemoz. Neela Montgomery, an executive board member at Crate and Barrel's parent company, the Otto Group, said that she would assume "most of Doug's current responsibilities working closely with Steve ‘Woody’ Woodward, president and chief merchant, and Mike Relich, COO, and the rest of the executive leadership team."