Macy’s New CEO May Be The Lifesaver It Needs

To say it’s been a rough couple of months for retail main staple Macy’s would be an understatement at this point.

Starting back in January, we reported on the 150 planned store closings, which soon led to the departure of Macy’s Chief Growth Officer Peter Sachse. In February, we shared the not-so-surprising news of its CEO, Terry Lundgren, stepping down.

After eight consecutive quarters of poor sales performance, the retail giant is, however, looking to mix things up with a newly announced CEO. Today, 34-year Macy’s veteran and former president Jeff Gennette takes the reins as the new CEO. With the tumultuous last few years for big-box retailers’ competing with the likes of discount stores like T.J. Maxx and Marshalls alongside eCommerce giants like Amazon, Macy’s will undoubtedly need to rework the way it conducts business.

Gennette shared this sentiment at a Bank of America Merrill Lynch investor conference just this past week. He said, “We need a new playbook if we’re going to win again. We don’t have our heads in the sand.”

While Macy’s has seen rough times, there is some hope for it to turn itself around as Gennette shared that 10 percent of its 43 million annual shoppers create approximately $13 billion of its $26 billion in sales. To help move the ball for its new plan, the CEO laid out a strategic plan that includes taming out-of-control couponing, being more of a landlord, selling more of its own brands, making more T.J. Maxx–like moves, offering more dazzling beauty and staffing stores with fewer workers.

With this new strategy in place, there’s no telling whether it will move the ball significantly enough for Macy’s to survive online consumer shopping patterns, but it’s seemingly a step in the right direction.


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