BofAML cuts Esprit (HKG:0330) price objective to $12.5


Following Esprit Holdings' (HKG:0330) announcement that Ronald van der Vis has resigned as executive director and group CEO with effect on or before 1 July 2013, Bank of America-Merrill Lynch (BofAML) says that it expects the market to react negatively as van der Vis is the key person for Esprit's 4-year transformation plan and has rebuilt the management team over the past 18 months.

The resignation is the second of Esprit's senior management following the departure of Chew Fook-aun (group executive director and CFO) on 1 June 2012.

BofAML reiterates its Underperform rating for Esprit and cuts its price objective for the stock to HK$12.5 from HK$14 given slow progress at new product design/store remodeling and rising uncertainty over consistent execution.

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