Chico’s FAS CEO and President Shelley Broader has resigned from her roles, as well as from the company’s Board of Directors. Bonnie Brooks, former Vice Chair, President and CEO of Hudson’s Bay Company and a current member of the Chico’s Board has been appointed Interim CEO, effective immediately.
The executive change comes as Chico’s tries to reposition its three retail properties: flagship brand Chico’s, White House Black Market and Soma. But the repositioning effort has continued to be difficult, especially with the retailer having to close 250 stores across all three brands as part of it. The company said it was undergoing a review of its operations designed to identify opportunities to enhance the retailer’s capabilities and reduce costs. On April 24, Chico’s launched the TellTale intimate apparel brand, designed to target new women customers between 25 and 40 years old.
The retailer still has struggled to generate positive momentum across its brands, which may have led to Broader’s departure. In Q4, Chico’s FAS comparable sales dipped 3.8%. Comparable sales fell 7.9% at Chico’s, declined 2.9% at White House Black Market and dipped 6.2% at Soma.
After Chico’s brand President Diane Ellis left in November 2018, Broader filled her role in the interim until the company brought on Nordstrom Rack President Karen McKibbin last month.
Chico’s FAS has engaged executive search firm Herbert Mines Associates to search for a permanent CEO and President.