Target announces leadership changes, reaffirms guidance

by Kim Souza ( 436 views 

Target CEO Brian Cornell announced Thursday, (Jan. 10) several key promotions in the company’s leadership team.

Cornell said Cathy Smith, chief financial officer, is retiring from that position and will serve in an advisory role until May 2020. He said Target is conducting a comprehensive search for its next CFO, looking internally and externally at potential candidates.

“On behalf of our board and Target’s entire team, I want to thank Cathy for her leadership and valuable contributions since joining the company in 2015,” Cornell said in a statement. “Cathy’s deep expertise and leadership helped usher in strategic change for Target and positioned us for sustainable, long-term growth. I appreciate the role Cathy will continue to play as we identify a successor and manage a seamless transition.”

Cornell also announced Stephanie Lundquist will be assuming the new role of president of food and beverage for the retailer. He said Lundquist has served as chief human resources (HR) officer since 2016, but in the new role she will oversee the full spectrum of merchandising and operations for food and beverage. She will continue to be a direct report to Cornell.

“She and the newly integrated team will focus on accelerating progress, strengthening cross-functional alignment and driving operational excellence throughout the enterprise,” Cornell said.

Melissa Kremer is being promoted to backfill the chief HR officer role vacated by Lundquist. Kremer will oversee the human resource strategy for the company’s 350,000 employees. She joined Target in 2004 and has worked in the human resources division since that time in various roles. Kremer will also join Target’s Leadership Team and report to Cornell.

Katie Boylan was named chief communications officer overseeing the internal communication, corporate and brand communication as well as public affairs and crisis management. She joined Target in 2011 and has 20 years of experience with national consumer brands. Boylan will also report to Cornell.

Mike McNamara, chief information officer for Target, will now lead the Enterprise Data Analytics and Business Intelligence team in addition to his role as CIO. He joined Target in 2015 from Tesco. Cornell said McNamara’s leadership will continue to provide data-driven council and expertise to the company and its suppliers.

Rick Gomez was named chief marketing and digital officer. In the expanded role Gomez will also lead Target’s digital marketing team focusing on personalization, loyalty and overall shopping experience. He joined Target in 2013 and was named chief marketing officer in 2017. He held prior brand marketing roles at PepsiCo, MIllerCoors and Quaker Oats Company.

In the news release, Target also reaffirmed its earnings guidance for the fourth quarter and full year behind robust holiday sales up 5.7% on a comparable basis for November through December. Digital sales grew more than 25% in the same period.

“We are very pleased with Target’s holiday season performance, which came on top of really strong results in the same period last year,” Cornell said. “This performance demonstrates the benefit of placing our stores at the center of every way we serve our guests, including both in-store shopping and digital fulfillment.”