Inside This Issue - News
Targetís Francis decides to move on
October 17th, 2011
MINNEAPOLIS – Target Corp.’s chief marketing officer position is vacant following the departure of Michael Francis, who left to become president of J.C. Penney Co.
Francis, 48, had been responsible for all marketing and advertising operations at Target, as well as for corporate strategy, corporate reputation management and the Target Foundation.
In January he was also put in charge of Target’s expansion into Canada. At that time Target chairman, president and chief executive officer Gregg Steinhafel lauded Francis’ contribution to the retailer.
"Under Michael’s leadership Target has emerged as one of the most recognizable brands in the world, and I am pleased that he will guide our expansion into Canada," Steinhafel said. "With more than 25 years experience with this corporation, Michael has a deep understanding of Target and the retail industry."
Among other things, Francis is credited with bolstering Target’s “cheap chic” image with a series of creative advertising campaigns, and for helping turn the retailer’s partnerships with designers into big sales events.
Francis began his retailing career as an executive trainee with Marshall Field’s 1985. He joined Dayton Hudson Corp., as Target was then known, when it acquired Marshall Field’s in 1990. He became Target’s executive vice president of marketing in 2001 and added the chief marketing officer title in 2008.
"This is a tremendous opportunity for me to get back to department store retail," Francis said in a statement. "I began my career working on the sales floor of the State Street Marshall Field’s in Chicago. It was there where my passion for retail began and my understanding of the power and potential of the department store was formed."
Francis will report to incoming CEO Ron Johnson, and he will be responsible for all merchandising, marketing, planning and allocation, product development, and sourcing.
"I am confident that Michael’s outstanding merchandising and marketing expertise will take the J.C. Penney brand to the next level," said chairman and current CEO Myron Ullman.