Signet Jewelers, the largest U.S. jewelry retailer and owner of Zales and Kay, is facing criticism from investors, employees, and customers. The stock fell 25% at the beginning of 2016-a notable decline in a rallying market.
Complaints about missing and swapped jewels and sexual harassment of employees are the latest to cause trouble for the company. But CEO Mark Light disputes these claims in an interview with CNBC.
He defends the company by saying, "We are all about trust." Reporters asked Light about customer credit and the "unusual amount of financing," which raises the question of what happens if customers default on their loans. To counter these concerns, Signet points to the company's 30-year history and their knowledge of customers. Light sees financing as a competitive advantage and says they are happy with their credit book.
Light does talk about continuous improvement and says they will "look at protocols going forward," but he also says, "We don't believe we have a serious problem."
This quarter, Signet earnings are up, but the controversy remains. The Motley Food reports, "CEO Mark Light continues to maintain his silence."
- What's your view of the situation? Is criticism about the company too harsh, is Mark Light in the dark, or what?
- How well goes Light address concerns about the company in this interview? What could he do differently to rebuild the brand? What should he do now?