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New management team of LIJA to focus on business expansion

Aug '08
Leading golf and sportswear designer Linda Hipp announces that her company, LIJA, has formed a new executive management team, promoting Ayr Barnett to Director of Operations and hiring Christine Jakovcic and Julia Wallis as Director of Brand Management & Revenue Strategy and Director of Finance & Administration, respectively.

Reporting to Hipp, the three directors are tasked with the creation and execution of company-wide strategies to promote long-term profitable growth of LIJA. The team will focus on increasing brand recognition, sales and distinctive product offerings, as well as cost management and business expansion.

"The LIJA brand is continuing to enhance its leadership position within and outside the golf market," says Hipp. "Christine, Julia and Ayr have a tremendous depth of experience that will help our business grow for years to come."

In her new role, Barnett will manage all operations, including production, purchasing strategies and business relationships. In this position, she builds on more than 10 years of traffic/shipping experience to oversee international shipment of product and raw materials. Barnett, who joined the company in 2003 and assisted with its re-branding from Hyp Golf, will also continue to work with the design team on the identification of trends and color stories.

As Director of Brand Management & Revenue Strategy, Jakovcic is charged with crafting and implementing LIJA's overall brand and marketing strategies. Previously the Senior Brand Manager/Marketing in Western Europe for Procter & Gamble, she will play a key role in developing the company's growth strategies, from preparing business plans and aiding sales team effectiveness to exploring expansion opportunities.

Wallis, who has more than 20 years accounting industry experience, oversees the company's financial reporting as Director of Finance & Administration. She will also work to institute cost-saving practices and identify areas where the company excels in administrative efficiency. Prior to joining LIJA, Wallis served as Manager at Davidson & Company, providing audit, accounting and tax services to clients.

A pioneer in the golf apparel industry, LIJA's growing presence in top clubs is supported by a variety of initiatives, including its Tour Style Leaders program.

The unique new approach to sponsorship provides eight elite players from the LPGA, Futures and Ladies European Tour with an expansive selection of LIJA products to wear on- and off-course in 2008. The golfers are also entered into a season-long competition for a Grand Prize valued at $25,000 consisting of a cash bonus and apparel sponsorship for the 2009 playing season, among other components.

LIJA is a staple in finer golf and non-golf retailers across North America, including world-renowned resorts and clubs like Pebble Beach, Kiawah Island and Whistling Straights. The company's clothing is worn by scores of women golf professionals worldwide, including Marisa Baena, Courtney Erdman, Jennifer Greggain, Christina Kim, Leta Lindley, Brenda McLarnon, Jane Park and Georgina Simpson.

For Fall 2008, LIJA has introduced six vibrant collections fusing sport, leisure and fashion with unique color stories, chic details and an expanded range of outerwear across more than 200 pieces. Shipping of these collections will continue through December.


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