OPERATIONS

Ascena Retail Group adds Michaels exec to board

BY Gina Acosta

The Ascena Retail Group is adding a seasoned retail CEO and a legal expert to its board of directors.

The parent company of Ann Taylor Loft, Ann and other banners announced three changes to its board of directors on Friday. Board member Klaus Eppler is retiring and Carl (“Chuck”) Rubin and Steven L. Kirshenbaum are joining the board.

Eppler has been a member of the Ascena Board of Directors since 1993. David Jaffe, President and CEO of the Ascena Retail Group, Inc., said: “Klaus has been an invaluable member of the Board and we thank him for his countless contributions. While Klaus will surely be missed, we are excited to welcome Chuck and Steve to the board.”

Rubin currently serves as CEO and chairman of the board at The Michaels Companies, Inc. He joined Michaels in 2013 as its CEO and was appointed as chairman of the board in 2015. Prior to joining Michaels, Rubin served as president and CEO of Ulta Salon, Cosmetics & Fragrances, Inc. Mr. Rubin also previously served on the executive committee of the board of directors of The National Retail Federation from 2007 to 2010.

“Chuck has expansive industry experience. His extensive managerial and operational knowledge of the retail industry make him an excellent addition to the Board,” said Jaffe.

Kirshenbaum is a senior partner in the Corporate Department of Proskauer Rose LLP, an international law firm with headquarters in New York City. Kirshenbaum primarily focuses on corporate, transactional, governance and securities practice areas for domestic and foreign companies.

Ascena Retail Group Inc. operates 4,900 stores throughout the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico.

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News

See Target’s new holiday pop-up in Manhattan

BY CSA STAFF

Target merges physical and digital retailing in its holiday pop-up, Target Wonderland, in Manhattan.

The 16,000-sq.-ft. space has 10 larger-than-life displays, including a jumbo Etch-a-Sketch, a Christmas tree made from green-foam Hulk Hands and the "S.S. Free Shipping” LEGO pirate ship, which is part of Target’s holiday advertising campaign.

Visitors receive a custom lanyard and a digital RFID “key” that they can use the key to scan the mini bullseye tag that is located on the products featured in the store, adding the items to a custom digital shopping list.

When they are ready to leave, shoppers can check out and purchase anything they added to their list.

Watch this video for a time-lapsed view of how Target transformed a 16,000-sq.-ft. space in Manhattan into its holiday-themed pop-up, Target Wonderland.

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OPERATIONS

COO is elevated to CEO at BJ’s Wholesale Club

BY Gina Acosta

BJ's Wholesale Club has promoted its COO to president and chief executive officer just months after recruiting him from Hess Retail Corp.

The club retailer announced that Christopher J. Baldwin, BJ's president and chief operating officer, has been named president and CEO, succeeding Laura J. Sen, who is assuming the role of non-executive chairman. The appointment is effective Feb. 1.

Baldwin will assume responsibility for the ongoing operations of BJ's, while Sen will join BJ's other board members in setting the long term strategic direction of the company. Baldwin will report to the company's board of directors and both he and Sen will remain members of the BJ's board.

"I am humbled and excited by this opportunity to lead BJ's," said Baldwin. "This is both a challenging time for retail and one full of opportunity. Our guide over the next several years will be a vision that is steadfastly focused on offering a distinctive shopping experience and deep value proposition to BJ's millions of loyal members. With the support of BJ's team members, I look forward to leading our company to even higher levels of achievement."

Baldwin joined BJ's in September as President and Chief Operating Officer. He brought more than 30 years of experience as an executive in the retail and consumer products industries. Before joining BJ's, he was CEO of Hess Retail Corporation, prior to its successful sale to Marathon Petroleum Corporation. Before joining Hess, Baldwin served in a variety of executive level roles at Kraft Foods (Nabisco), The Hershey Company, and Procter and Gamble.

Cameron Breitner, Partner of CVC Capital Partners, said, "We are extremely grateful for Laura's leadership over the past several years and her many contributions to BJ's success. Chris is an inspired leader and his broad experiences qualify him to step in to this role. He is well-respected within BJ's and across the industry, and his personal style fits well with the company's core values."

BJ’s, founded in 1984, operates 211 warehouse clubs and 126 gas stations for members in 15 states. Sen, a 25-year veteran of the company, has been chief executive since 2009.

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