In January, Target CEO Gregg Steinhafel said
that his company was going to make “significant changes” in the wake a of a massive data breach that compromised up to 110 million customers’ credit card information during the holiday shopping season.
Now, one of those major changes has happened. Gregg Steinhafel isn’t Target’s president and CEO anymore.
In a statement posted on the Target corporate website
Monday morning, the retail chain’s board of directors said Steinhafel’s decision to end his 35-year tenure with the company came “after extensive discussions.” Target’s chief financial officer, John Mulligan, will become the interim CEO and president, and board member Roxanne S. Austin will be the interim, non-executive chairman of the board.
The closest the statement gets to giving a concrete reason for Steinhafel’s departure is here:
Most recently, Gregg led the response to Target’s 2013 data breach. He held himself personally accountable and pledged that Target would emerge a better company. We are grateful to him for his tireless leadership and will always consider him a member of the Target family.
Target has already started a “comprehensive CEO search,” the statement says.
The Associated Press
also got a hold of a letter Steinhafel wrote to the board, in which he wrote, “The last several months have tested Target in unprecedented ways.”
[CONFERENCE: Corporate Communicators Conference. June 9-11, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.]
The AP also surmised that the move is an attempt to give Target a “clean slate.” What do you think, PR Daily
readers? Will the CEO’s resignation inspire customers to forgive and forget?