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Riley out at Children's Place, search for CFO begins

RT Analysis: Stability in finance leadership needed

SECAUCUS, N.J. -- The Children's Place Retail Stores announced that Susan Riley, EVP finance and administration, is leaving the company. The company said it will eliminate the position of EVP finance and administration and has begun a search for a CFO.

John Taylor, VP finance, will assume the position of interim principal financial dfficer and Bernard McCracken, VP controller, will assume the position of interim principal accounting officer.

Jane Elfers, president and CEO, said, "On behalf of the board of directors and senior management, I want to thank Sue for her many contributions to The Children's Place. She has been very supportive during my transition to The Children's Place and has helped to position the company for long-term success. We wish her well in her future endeavors."

Riley joined The Children's Place in March 2006 from her previous role as CFO of Klinger Advanced Aesthetics. Prior to that, she served as SVP, CFO of Abercrombie & Fitch. 

Riley was originally slated to replace then CFO Hiten Patel upon his departure. Then in December 2007 Richard Paradise, SVP finance was named CFO and principal accounting officer, reporting directly to Riley, only to announce his retirement less than a year later. 

The shuffling of executives in Children's Place appears to have taken its toll on the company's financial performance. The company lowered its guidance for fiscal 2010 following a less-than-stellar third-quarter performance. The company said in November 2010 that it projects earnings per diluted share from continuing operations will be in the range of $2.78 to $2.83 for fiscal 2010, down from its previous guidance of $3.08 to $3.18.

The company is expected to report fourth quarter results on March 9. In November 2010, the company said it expects earnings per diluted share for the quarter to be in the range of 98 cents to $1.03.