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Revlon Restocks In-House Legal Group After Avoiding Bankruptcy

June 16, 2021, 9:08 PM

Revlon Inc., a personal care company controlled by billionaire Ronald Perelman, has brought on a new chief compliance officer and hired several other lawyers following departures from its in-house ranks.

Alison Hinds-Pearl, Revlon’s new compliance leader, was hired after spending five years at MasterCard Inc. The former New York City prosecutor was a vice president and North America regional compliance counsel for the credit card company.

“Revlon’s legal team is proud to be able to attract and develop top-tier legal talent,” the company said in a statement to Bloomberg Law. “The valuable experience and mentoring members of our team gain at Revlon prepares them well for high-level future opportunities.”

Hinds-Pearl takes over a role recently vacated by Meagan Fitzsimmons, a five-year veteran of Revlon’s legal group, where she was an assistant general counsel and compliance chief. Anouck Giovanola, an assistant general counsel and vice president of law and litigation, also left Revlon this month to become general counsel for Tom Ford International LLC, a New York-based company controlled by the fashion designer and filmmaker of the same name.

The in-house exits come after Revlon avoided bankruptcy in November when it reached a debt deal with creditors, some of whom have been engaged in a months-long battle with Citigroup Inc. over a $504 million payment they mistakenly received from the banking giant last summer. Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison has been advising Revlon on its restructuring.

Revlon, which disclosed this week the resignation of its accounting chief Pamela Bucher, has watched other lawyers depart in recent months as the company, known for its synonymous cosmetics, fragrances, and skin care products, sought to restructure its debt load. Revlon’s bonds soared in value earlier this month after the company secured a $130 million asset-based lending facility.

Fitzsimmons was announced Tuesday as the new chief compliance officer for GXO Logistics Inc., a spin-off from transportation company XPO Logistics Inc., which last year parted ways with a newly hired top lawyer after it chose to split its business.

Giovanola’s last day at Revlon was June 4. She joined the company in 2018 after spending a half-dozen years as a litigator at Jenner & Block, which promoted Giovanola to partner in 2016.

Perelman disclosed last year that he would begin streamlining his business empire, one controlled by his holding company, New York-based MacAndrews & Forbes Inc., which in January reshuffled its own legal leadership.

New Revlon Recruits

Revlon general counsel Cari Robinson didn’t respond to a request for comment about the turnover. A former federal prosecutor and longtime in-house lawyer at International Business Machines Inc., Robinson joined Revlon in mid-2019, succeeding former legal chief Mitra Hormozi.

Hormozi remained a consultant and board member at Revlon until she joined New York’s Walden Macht & Haran as a partner earlier this year. Hormozi and Walden Macht have been retained by the office of Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D-N.Y.) to represent it in an inquiry into accusations of sexual harassment and misconduct involving the governor, who has other legal ties to Perelman.

Revlon’s most recent proxy statement shows that Hormozi received roughly $193,500 in total compensation from the company in 2020. Hormozi was also paid a $250,000 annual consulting fee after “transitioning oversight of the company’s worldwide legal affairs” to Robinson, Revlon said in a securities filing. Hormozi currently owns more than $665,000 in Revlon stock, according to Bloomberg data.

Robinson was not one of Revlon’s three highest-paid executives last year, per the company’s proxy. The document was signed by deputy general counsel and corporate secretary Grace Fu, a former chief legal and administrative officer at Barneys New York Inc., a high-end retailer she left last year after it was sold out of bankruptcy. Barneys’ return was delayed until January by the coronavirus pandemic.

Fu now holds an in-house role once held by Michael Sheehan, a longtime deputy general counsel and corporate secretary at Revlon, who left the company within the past few months and resurfaced in April as general counsel for Motorsport Networks LLC, a Miami-based media and technology company.

Amanda LeCheminant, a deputy general counsel at Motorsport who in January became general counsel of the company’s gaming division, didn’t respond to a request for comment about Sheehan’s hire. In May, Motorsport completed its acquisition of Studio 397, owner of racing simulation platform rFactor 2.

As for Revlon, the company has also moved to fill vacancies created by other departing lawyers.

Peloton Interactive Inc., a home fitness company that has been busy adding in-house expertise during the pandemic, hired former Revlon vice president of employment law Kristine Huggins last year as a senior employment counsel. Mona Mehta, an employment lawyer for Success Academy Charter Schools, was subsequently hired by New York-based Revlon as a senior global employment counsel.

Chelsea Azrak, a former senior litigation associate at Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson recruited by Revlon last year as senior counsel for legal and compliance, was promoted in April to senior legal counsel and deputy compliance officer.

Azrak’s appointment came before Fitzsimmons left Revlon to take the top compliance job at GXO, which is set to separate from Greenwich, Conn.-based XPO in the third quarter of this year.

To contact the reporter on this story: Brian Baxter in New York at bbaxter@bloomberglaw.com

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Chris Opfer at copfer@bloomberglaw.com;
John Hughes in Washington at jhughes@bloombergindustry.com

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