IRVINE — With the ink barely dry on his resignation as president of Carter Hawley Hale Stores, H. Michael Hecht said Thursday that he will take the position of president at Builders Emporium.
Hecht announced Tuesday that he was leaving Carter Hawley Hale, which operates the Broadway and other department stores. Analysts speculated that Hecht left Carter Hawley, which has just emerged from bankruptcy, because he was not being considered for the post of chief executive. That is essentially correct, he confirmed Thursday.
The presidency of Builders Emporium, which operates 101 do-it-yourself stores, has been vacant since July, when James T. McKitrick resigned. Hecht said his goal is to help the company find its niche in the competitive home- and hardware-supplies industry.
Builders Emporium "has terrific locations, great top-of-the-mind awareness and, I believe, excellent potential for growth," Hecht said. "This is a terrific opportunity, and under any circumstances I would have taken it."
Builders Emporium, based in Irvine, has stores across California and the Southwest, where Hecht spent much of his 17-year career with Carter Hawley. It is owned by Collins & Aikman Group in New York. The company's other subsidiaries are in North Carolina: Kayser-Roth Hosiery, maker of No Nonsense and Calvin Klein hosiery and Burlington socks; and Collins & Aikman Corp., a maker of wallpaper, carpeting and automotive textiles.