Gary Friedman joined RH as Chief Executive Officer in 2001 and currently serves as the Company’s Chairman and CEO. Since taking the helm of RH, Mr. Friedman has transformed what was initially a nearly bankrupt business with a $20 million market cap into the world’s leading luxury home brand with a market value of $10 billion. The company, once known as Restoration Hardware, began as a retailer of nostalgic discovery items and today is revered as a $3 billion luxury design ecosystem inclusive of the company’s architecturally significant design galleries, many with integrated restaurants, wine vaults and barista bars, RH Guesthouses, a revolutionary new hospitality concept for travelers seeking privacy and luxury opening in New York City Fall of 2021, and Aspen Fall of 2022, which will include the first RH Bath House & Spa, RH Residences, fully furnished luxury homes and condominiums, plus RH1, RH2 & RH3, the brands private jets and luxury yacht which is available for charter in the Caribbean and Mediterranean where the wealthy and affluent visit and vacation. Since going public in 2012, the company’s stock has risen over 2000%, making it one of the top-performing retail consumer IPOs of the past decade.
Mr. Friedman joined RH from Williams-Sonoma, Inc., where he was President and Chief Operating Officer from 2000 to 2001, Chief Merchandising Officer and President of Retail from 1995 to 2000, as well as President of the Williams-Sonoma and Pottery Barn brands from 1993 to 2000. During his tenure, Mr. Friedman was responsible for transforming Pottery Barn from a $50 million tabletop and accessories business into a $1 billion plus home furnishings lifestyle brand. He also introduced the revolutionary Williams-Sonoma Grande Cuisine stores – growing the business from less than $100 million to nearly $1 billion – and spent several years conceptualizing and developing the West Elm brand, which launched shortly after he left the company.
Prior to joining Williams-Sonoma in 1988 as the Senior Vice President of Stores, Mr. Friedman began his retail career in 1977 as a stock boy at the Gap, where he displayed an innate talent for sales and merchandising and a meticulous eye for detail. He eventually became the company’s youngest-ever store manager, district manager, and regional manager, eventually overseeing 63 stores across Southern California.