Rick Paterno, who left as president of footwear at The Jones Group last June after four years with the company, has been appointed to the new position of president and chief executive of Highline United Holdings, with global responsibilities, with effect from the end of last month.

The company markets various lines of shoes and accessories under brand names such as Ash, Elie Tahari, Ellen Tracy, French Connection, Jean Michel Cazabat, Luxury Rebel and Julian Hakes.

Highline was set up in 2008 by a big Chinese shoe manufacturer, the Max Oriental Group, to develop and market its own brands globally. Founded in 1994 by J.C. Chiang, the group was previously doing only contract work for various clients.

In November 2011, Highline set up a subsidiary for the European market, based in London and operating out of Munich. It is headed up by Marcus Meyer, who worked for Geox between 2002 and 2010. Highline Europe and a similar unit for the Asia-Pacific region based in Hong Kong, which is run by an interim manager for the time being, report to Paterno.