Macy’s shares get boost from turnaround efforts

Macy’s late last month shook things up by making changes to its executive team and to its merchandising structure. These efforts are already having a positive effect on the retailer’s shares.

According to Zacks, shares are “riding high of late, driven by previously announced measures revolving around stores closures, cost containment, real estate strategy and investment in omni-channel capabilities to improve performance. In a month, the stock has gained 11.7%, almost in line with the industry.”

Former top eBay executive Hal Lawton was named president of Macy’s and stepped into his new role Sept. 8. He is responsible for all aspects of the Macy’s brand, including merchandising, marketing, stores, operations, technology and consumer insights and analytics. He’ll be pairing his strong technology and digital expertise with Jeff Kantor’s extensive experience in merchandising and stores as the company consolidates three functions — merchandising, planning and private brands — into a single merchandising ASPECT. Leading that effort will be Kantor, a 35-year Macy’s veteran, who now reports to Lawton.

Everything is getting organized around five categories, or what Macy’s is calling “families-of-business.” These are:

  • Ready-to-wear
  • Center core
  • Beauty
  • Men’s and kids
  • Home

Feeding into this new merchandising structure are strengthened customer insights and data analytics, which the company is expanding to include inventory replenishment and pricing capabilities.

“Macy’s best merchants will be in the right structure to operate at the speed of our customer and will be fueled by the power of data,” said CEO Jeff Gennette. “Exclusivity is a great customer loyalty tool, and we plan to grow that offering to 40% of our business. Having a single lens for each family-of-business will allow us to expedite our strategy of delivering this edited, elevated and exclusive assortment to our best customers. To achieve this, we will aggressively grow our private brands while also offering the best national brands. I’ve asked Jeff Kantor to lead merchandising because of his deep knowledge of our business, strong relationships with our brand partners and outstanding leadership skills.”


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