Tiffany & Co. has appointed Ralph Nicoletti as its next EVP and CFO, effective April 2. He steps into the CFO role following current chief operating officer and CFO James N. Fernandez’s plans to retire in July.
Nicoletti will be based in New York and responsible for the company’s worldwide financial functions and information technology. He will report to chairman and CEO Michael J. Kowalski
Nicoletti joins Tiffany from global health services and insurance company CIGNA, where he served as EVP and CFO since June 2011. Prior to that, he served as EVP and CFO of Alberto-Culver in Chicago, a major manufacturer and marketer of personal care and household brands acquired by Unilever Group.
Nicoletti’s career began in 1979 with General Foods, which was acquired by Altria Corp. and later combined with Kraft Foods, where he held a number of accounting, finance and auditing roles of increasing responsibility. He has a bachelor’s degree and MBA from Pace University.
“We have made key management additions to our organization in recent years,” said Kowalski. “Our first-class finance and IT functions and Ralph’s leadership experience and global perspective will be valuable to Tiffany’s continued worldwide expansion.”
Fernandez has been CFO since the resignation of the previous CFO last November and had also served as CFO from 1989 to 2011. A 30-year veteran of Tiffany, Fernandez has been Tiffany’s chief operating officer since 2011. Upon his retirement, the title of chief operating officer will be eliminated and, instead, Tiffany’s SVP of global operations and customer service and the SVP of manufacturing, diamonds and gemstones will report directly to Kowalski.
“Jim Fernandez has made enormous contributions to Tiffany’s financial success and global expansion over the past three decades,” added Kowalski. “In addition to his extraordinary leadership of the financial and information technology organizations at Tiffany, Jim also played a critical role in building a world-class distribution, manufacturing, and diamond-sourcing infrastructure. I, along with all my Tiffany colleagues, will be forever grateful for Jim’s immense contributions to the company’s success, his always wise counsel and his enduring friendship.”