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Monday, July 16, 2012

MOVERS and SHAKERS: Pierre Dupéré, President & CEO of North America BLEUFORET: Tricotage Des Vosges Our Coverage Sponsored by Hallak Cleaners the Couture Cleaner

Pierre Dupéré

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Pierre Dupéré is forty-five years old, married to Erin Mc Garr and the proud father of two young boys Mathew and Sébastien.  
He began his career in the Apparel Industry in 1990, after successfully creating a start-up business in the swimming pool industry immediately following university.  

His sales career in the apparel business began with Dim, Canada. At that time he was a young energetic man ready to rule the industry. There, he was successively the top Salesman of the Year and when, in 1994, the opportunity to import and represent his own line arose, he could not let it pass by.

M. Jacques Marie, previously CEO of Dim worldwide, purchased one of Dim’s factories in les Vosges, France, to begin his unique brand: BLEUFORET. Soon afterwards, Gérard Siarri, the Export Manager with Dim at the time, joined him to head the Export Division for his new company.  

Pierre Dupéré was a natural fit to join the team. From 1995 to 1999 he managed his own agency developing the BLEUFORET brand throughout Canada and building his own successful sales team. In 1999 Groupelle Lingerie, a local lingerie manufacturer owned by an ex-CEO of Dim, Canada, retained his services to head their sales team throughout the country. In the first six months he increased sales by 70%.

In 2001, the parent company of BLEUFORET: Tricotage Des Vosges, approached M. Pierre Dupéré with a new and more ambitious project, to preside over their North American operations as CEO. Soon after, Tricotage Des Vosges signed an agreement with Dim and purchased the rights for their socks. With Dim and BLEUFORET he had the strength to attack the market aggressively.

Again, in 2001, the French company grew through acquisition and acquired the lingerie brand of Rosy from Dim SA, which created a perfect fit with BLEUFORET and DIM socks, and the formation of a powerful trio of successful companies was completed.

In the fall of 2005, with the fashion trends changing rapidly, BLEUFORET created a new collection of natural fibre tights. The collection was greeted with huge enthusiasm and, since there was a shift from trousers to skirts, the market was ready and it was an instant success.

M. Pierre Dupéré and his team placed the collection everywhere – Holt Renfrew, Les Ailes de la Mode, Legs Beautiful, The Bay and Sears, to name but a few.

In 2010 it was deemed the right time to take on the market to the south. New York was the prime target and the best place to start. It was a familiar city of opportunity and we knew we had a lot of demand from customers living there that travelled abroad and had fallen in love with BLEUFORET.  

Subsequently, contact was made with Melissa Sivetti during the Curves show in February 2012. Since then a representation agreement was signed and there’s no looking back. We are so pleased to present Pierre Dupéré as our latest Mover and Shaker not only because he is a leader in fashion but also since he is a hockey enthusiast! Peachy Deegan interviewed Pierre Dupéré for Whom You Know.

Peachy Deegan: What is your first memory of apparel? 
Pierre Dupéré: My first sales meeting starting with my first lingerie show, wow for a mid 20’s young man.

What can those in America learn from the French Canadians in terms of style? 
Not that much: I believe our cultures are very similar in the northeast, men and women are very fashion-conscious.

Would you like to tell us about your past swimming pool business? Peachy LOVES pools! 
Actually I met my wife during those years, I was her pool boy, just like in the movies, apparently the pool has never looked the same since.

What are the challenges of the executive side of fashion and how do you best meet them? 
Simply said-the management side which keeps you away from the fun stuff, sales, you basically need to set weekly schedules to make sure you go out on the market or else you end up in the office all the time which is not my favorite.

What do you love most about your job? 
Meeting different people with different backgrounds; there are so many people with great stories to tell.

What is a typical day like for you? 
Early morning coffee, news paper, drive to work, short but important greeting to my assistant, people are always happy when we pay genuine special attention to them, overview of pending and new emails, response to urgent ones, quick call to reps for overview of market. Quick hop to the majors in downtown, Ogilvy’s, The Bay, Simon’s. Twice a week visit of top doors in Montreal, Lyla, Soxbox, Curiosité Kamikaze and then rap up of day at the office.

What should the world know about Bleuforet? 
Trying is adopting, I’ve said it may times it may sound cliché but true.

What or who has had the most influence on your pursuit of excellence? 
My Dad, he’s worked so hard for so many years with very nice success.

What are you proudest of and why? 
My children, they keep me happy when all seems bad, their smiles and cuddles when I get home puts everything back in perspective.

What would you like to do professionally that you have not yet had the opportunity to do? 
I would like to create a fund for underprivileged kids at a local school in a sports or arts program. I think sports and arts are a necessity for kids.

What honors and awards have you received in your profession? 
Best sales rep, monthly and yearly @ Dim, 2 times Bronze for Bleuforet subsidiary results, Local Sports Volunteer

What is your favorite place to be in Manhattan? 
Central Park, Rockefeller Center, The Magnolia trees and gardens in the spring in Washington square

What is your favorite shop in Manhattan? 
Cole Haan and Polo Ralph Lauren

What is your favorite drink? 
Red Wine, Pinot Noir from Sonoma Valley, Leyton Ridge

What is the funniest thing that has ever happened to you at a cocktail party? 
I can’t remember...

What is your favorite restaurant in Manhattan? 
I don’t really have one but I really like the old diners in the meat packing district

What is your favorite Manhattan book? 
J.D. Salinger’s Catcher in the Rye, it’s not Manhattan but definitely NYish, or maybe James Patterson’s Worst Case, I could follow the book because of all the places I had visited in NY city.

Who would you like to be for a day and why? 
It’s hard to say there are so many choices for so many different reasons but if I had only one to choose it would be Deepak Chopra, he is such a great man with great ideas.

If you could have anything in Manhattan named after you what would it be and why? 
A theatre, to make my wife proud, she’s a theatre fanatic.

What has been your best Manhattan athletic experience? 
A few years back I brought my nephew to a Rangers game against Pittsburgh, it was a fantastic!

What is your favorite thing to do in Manhattan that you can do nowhere else? 
Go ice skating in Central Park with my kids and wife

If you could have dinner with any person living or passed, who would it be and why? 
This time I’ll take sports, it would have to be Maurice Richard, he was the greatest hockey player of all time.

What has been your best Manhattan art or music experience? 
Night at the Piazza @ the Lincoln Center about 5 year ago, it was a wonderful evening with my wife in NY.

What do you personally do or what have you done to give back to the world? 
I spend most of my free time coaching hockey in the winter and Rugby in the summer, I like giving back to the kids by volunteering my time to local sporting clubs.

What do you think is most underrated and overrated here? 
Overrated would be the Rangers, haha, underrated would be traffic at 5 it is absolute insanity in city!

Other than Movers and Shakers of course, what is your favorite Whom You Know column and what do you like about it? 
Sporty Peachy (where you talk about hockey of course!), Gotham Gadgets and things to do. I like the sports; I can never read enough about sports.

Have you tried The Peachy Deegan yet and if not, why not?  
No, I haven’t I wasn’t really aware of it, I’ll have to make myself one soon!

What else should Whom You Know readers know about you? 
There’s not really that much more except that I’m a very lucky man to have everything that I have and I’m very thankful.

How would you like to be contacted by Whom You Know readers?

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