Up Close is Sourcing Journal’s regular check-in with industry executives to get their take on topics ranging from personal style to their company’s latest moves. In this Q&A, Barbara Fevelo-Hoad, chief sourcing officer of SPARC Group—a joint venture of Simon Property Group and Authentic Brands Group that designs, manufactures and distributes brands like Aeropostale, Forever 21 and Nautica—discusses what the consumer goods industry is getting right and her group’s growing portfolio of brands.
Name: Barbara Fevelo-Hoad
Title: Chief sourcing officer
Company: SPARC Group
Which other industry has the best handle on the supply chain? What can apparel learn?
The apparel industry can learn from the consumer goods industry. Consumer goods is best equipped to handle the supply chain with the focus on global procurement processes that involve the suppliers, the willingness to invest in technology and investing in best-in-class talent.
How would you describe yourself as a consumer?
I will purchase if the price/value equation is in balance. I am also seeking sustainably sourced apparel and consumer goods.
Which fashion era is your favorite?
My favorite fashion era is the 1920s Art Deco. The liberalism of women in the 1920s was a time of experimentation of new designs that modernized the way women dress.
Who’s your style icon?
What’s the best decision your company has made in the last year?
Investing in technology and the employees.
How would you describe your corporate culture?
SPARC Group’s corporate culture is collaborative, respectful of each other’s function and demonstrates integrity always.
What can companies learn from Covid-19?
Trusted employees can thrive regardless of the circumstances and seek ways to make remote work successful.
What keeps you up at night?
The global effect of Covid with all the team members at the factory/suppliers and their families.
What makes you most optimistic?
With the U.S. on its way to being vaccinated for Covid, the excitement of going to shows again, shopping and resuming travel.
Tell us about your company’s latest product introduction:
SPARC is expanding the portfolio with Lucky, Brooks Brothers and now Eddie Bauer. Each brand has its own DNA and brings new product and expertise to SPARC. The supplier portfolio is growing with the needs of each brand, and we are also able to take learnings from each brand and share best practices. The new brands are creating centers of excellence, which enhances the brands as well the associates involved.