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Another US Retailer Loses its Chief Marketer

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Four major American retailers have lost their head marketers in less than a month.

The latest: Chico’s FAS Inc., which revealed Monday that Miki Berardelli, president of digital commerce and chief marketing officer, would be leaving the company. She joined in August 2014, following an almost five-year stint at Tory Burch.

News of Berardelli’s exit coincided with the company’s decision to have the presidents of each of its three brands—Chico’s, White House Black Market and Soma—take over the marketing and digital commerce responsibilities, instead of having one centralized person over everything, in a bid to cut costs and improve operating efficiencies.

“On behalf of the Chico’s FAS organization, we thank Miki for her vision and dedication. We wish her all the best as she moves ahead towards her next endeavor,” Shelley Broader, president and chief executive officer, said in a statement.

It’s not just the retailers that are re-evaluating marketing roles.

Ivan Wicksteed, CMO at Old Navy for the last three years, reportedly left the struggling chain store last month, though Gap Inc. has yet to confirm it. What’s certain is that Old Navy’s comparable store sales have been less than stellar of late: they declined 6 percent in March, were flat in February and down 6 percent in January.

Earlier this month Macy’s said CMO Martine Reardon had resigned and would be leaving on May 13, after four years in the role and 32 years of service. While she has received numerous industry accolades for her marketing work, the department store’s sales fell 3.7% to $27.08 billion in 2015 and net income was down nearly 30 percent to $1.07 billion.

Elsewhere, Kohl’s executive vice president of marketing, William Setliff, allegedly exited this month, too. Michelle Gass, chief merchandising and customer officer, has assumed his responsibilities until a replacement can be found. But, again, there has been no official release from the retailer explaining Setliff’s departure and his LinkedIn profile has not been updated, although a written statement sent to Ad Week said, “We thank Will for his many contributions to Kohl’s during his service and wish him well in his future endeavors.”

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