Saturday, February 03, 2007

Cynthia Harriss is suddenly free for lunch next week

Gap's president is gone, as Anonymous hinted she should and would be. But this is disappointing: "Marka Hansen, who for three years has led the smaller and more upscale Banana Republic chain, will take over at Gap." Did they have to poach someone from the successful side of the business? Would a total outsider have been better?

Alex W. Smith says yes. Or more precisely, people who think Alex W. Smith can turn around Pier 1 say yes: '"It’s certainly a positive that they brought in someone from the outside,' said Cid Wilson, an analyst at Kevin Dann & Partners....'Bringing someone from the outside changes the corporate culture. My concerns are that there are some things that I think are going to be tougher for him to turn around, particularly the fact that Pier 1 has seen a lot of pressure from competitors.'" Yes. Can't do much about the competition. Better just to cut jobs and keep hoping that wicker -- the hoodie of the furniture world? -- suddenly takes off.

There is good news at least for Marka Hansen: look at all the free advice! I do suggest, though, skipping right over Godin's comments. Complete buzzkill.

5 comments:

Make the logo bigger said...

"the hoodie of the furniture world"

Gold.

Anonymous said...

I've been quiet for awhile...waiting to see what would happen.
While I give Fisher credit for stepping right in there and making some needed changes, I am a little let down by the Hansen decision. Making Marka Hansen also put a few other changes into play that could be very damaging to their organization.
So they made Hansen president of Gap. Based on what? Her track record at Banana? Again...I wish that analysts could look deeper into the numbers. Everyone is saying that Banana delivered the "Bright Spot" in the holiday season. With a 2% positive comp?? Is that honestly a bright spot? Considering that the slide at Banana had been severe for quite awhile and their women's business is not doing well. Men's at Banana delivered the comp and in the last year they have let one merchant go, who was responsible for a major part of that comp, and moved another men's merchant to Old Navy. If men's had remained flat at Banana they would also have been looking at a negative compas well.
Also...a 2% comp is most assuredly not meeting the numbers that were planned. I hear from insiders that Banana, despite the comp, still did not deliver plan and most importantly margin goals.
And who have they replaced Marka with at Banana? An "Interim" president that had NO MERCHANDISING EXPERIENCE prior to joining Gap inc a few years ago. I smell a whiff of Cynthis Harriss in the air. Jack Calhoun was a marketing analyst, I believe at Charles Schwab, before going to Banana as head of marketing. His only contribution to the merchandising arena was the handbag launch at Banana, which has gone so so.
Once again Gap Inc has promoted an analyst and not a merchant. It looks like they may have temporarily patched one hole in the dam while creating another leak.
I still say they need people from the outside.

Anonymous said...

Also....watch waht happens in the next few weeks with these executives.....
Byron Pollitt...CFO
Eva Sage-Gavin...EVP Human Resources
Both were brought in by Pressler.

Irene Done said...

Interesting -- I wonder what changes Gap and Pier 1 will go through in the next few weeks and months?

Anonymous said...

Well, all said and done -- all former Disney execs that Pressler brought into Gap Inc are now officially gone. Oh, yea, the one survivor is Ms. HR -- surprisingly but perhaps her staying is due to all the pricey consultants she brings in to do diversity, talent (yikes that Susan is scary), etc. Oh well, glad I no longer have stock in that company.