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Macy’s Shakes Up Senior Leadership, Eliminates COO Role

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Macy’s has announced a series of changes to its senior leadership team, including the elimination of the Chief Operations Officer role, as it moves forward with its “Polaris” omnichannel transformation strategy. Current COO John Harper, who has with Macy’s for more than 35 years, will leave the company on Aug. 1, 2021.

Additional leadership changes include:

  • With the elimination of the COO role, Chief Stores Officer Marc Mastronardi and Chief Supply Chain Officer Dennis Mullahy will report directly to Chairman and CEO Jeff Gennette;
  • Laura Miller has been appointed CIO, reporting directly to Gennette, effective March 15, 2021. She joins Macy’s from InterContinental Hotel Group (IHG) and succeeds CTO Naveen Krishna, who is leaving the company;
  • Marla Beck, CEO and Co-founder of beauty retailer Bluemercury, which Macy’s acquired in 2015, will leave the company this summer. Beck’s planned departure was first announced in September 2019, at the time when fellow Co-founder and COO Barry Beck left the company. Macy’s has begun the search for a new CEO who, once appointed, will report to Tony Spring, Chairman and CEO of Bloomingdale’s; and
  • Chuck DiGiovanna, currently VP of Real Estate, has been appointed to lead Macy’s real estate function, succeeding Douglas W. Sesler, who is leaving the company. DiGiovanna will report to CFO Adrian V. Mitchell.

In her new position as CIO, Miller will work to improvement Macy’s omnichannel experience and modernize the retailer’s platforms. In her previous role as CIO at IHG, Miller managed strategy, delivery, operations and security for more than 5,900 hotels in 100+ countries. Miller also has held leadership roles at global payments processing firm First Data Corporation, TD Ameritrade and The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.

“As a digitally led omnichannel retailer, Macy’s is in the midst of an exciting transformation,” said Gennette in a statement. “We are building a diverse leadership team that includes a blend of new talent with outside perspectives, along with our tenured and best developed leaders who will accelerate the progress of our Polaris growth strategy. I am confident that these changes in reporting structure will enable us to be nimbler and more efficient as we move forward in our recovery and drive top- and bottom-line growth.”

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Macy’s updated its “Polaris” growth strategy in late February 2021 as it announced better-than-expected Q4 2020 results, marking a return to profitability for the department store chain. Among the updates to the Polaris strategy are:

  • Plans to grow digital sales to $10 billion in the next three years;
  • The addition of 35 more Macy’s Backstage locations in 2021;
  • The continuation of planned closures for 125 locations over the next three years; and
  • Continued testing of the Market by Macy’s smaller-format off-mall concept.

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