Myer customer chief exits as retailer battles tough trading conditions

ASX-listed department store giant reveals deputy CEO and chief merchandise and customer officer, Daniel Bracken, is leaving and revises down FY17 profit forecasts

Myer has revealed its deputy CEO, chief merchandise and customer officer, Daniel Bracken, is leaving the company amid ongoing tough retail trading conditions. 

In a trading update provided to the ASX yesterday, the company confirmed Bracken was leaving the department store giant after a two-and-a-half year stint. Initially recruited as MD of marketing and merchandising, Bracken was appointed deputy MD not long after and then chief merchandising and customer officer in May 2016. It was at this time that Myer also appointed former Virgin marketing leader, Michael Scott, as its executive GM of brand marketing.

Prior to this, Bracken was CEO of the Apparel Group for three years, and also held several roles at Burberry including VP of strategy, business integration director and commercial and operations director.

During his time at Myer, Bracken has been key contributor to the retailer’s ‘New Myer’ strategy, a $600 million initiative aimed at rejuvenating the department store giant and improving its customer offers and experiences, omni-channel shopping capabilities, and productivity.

As part of this quest to become more relevant to modern-day consumers, Bracken worked to secure a range of high-quality global brands for stores including John Lewis, Jak + Jones Premium, Radley, Oroton and Saba. Since the launch of ‘New Myer’ in September 2015, he also oversaw more than 700 new or upgraded brand installations.

A spokesperson told CMO Bracken leaves this week, the reasons for which have not been disclosed. Instead of directly replacing him in the role, Myer has promoted Karen Brewster (former group GM of womens', mens' and childrens' fashion) to executive GM of product merchandising, and Damian Walton (group GM merchandise planning) to executive GM of product distribution. The deputy CEO post will be abolished.

But in its latest trading update, Myer cited continued weakness in retail trading conditions, particularly in July, and revised down its net FY2017 net profit from $69.3 million to between $66m and $70m.

Myer CEO and MD, Richard Umbers, said the June-July Stocktale sale has traditionally been an important profit generation period for the department store. New initiatives to engage customers, drive foot traffic and increase average transaction value had mitigated some of the impact of volatile and challenging trading conditions.

“We are responding to the challenging external environment in a way that preserves the integrity of the New Myer strategy that is built around customer service, engaging retail experiences and wanted brands, while continuing our focus on efficiency and productivity,” he stated.

However, there were dark financial spots across the group. Myer confirmed it is writing down its 20 per cent interest in the Australian Topshop Topman franchise, which went into administration on 24 May, worth $6.8 million. The company attributed its decision to being unable to secure a deal with UK-based brand owner, Arcadia Group, to continue running brand concessions in its store network.

Poor performance across the sass & bide brand over the past year also hit revenue figures, and Myer now expects an impairment charge of $38.8m as a result.

In its half-yearly financial results, Umbers claimed an encouraging first-half after seeing a slight increase in sales, even as net profits dipped by 4 per cent. The group posted a 1.8 per cent rise in total sales to $1.79 billion for the 26 weeks to 23 January 2016. Sales were also up 3.3 per cent on comparable store sales.

It was off the back of this that Myer revised its full-year guidance range to between $66 million and $72 million, up by $2 million.

Follow CMO on Twitter: @CMOAustralia, take part in the CMO conversation on LinkedIn: CMO ANZ, join us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CMOAustralia, or check us out on Google+:google.com/+CmoAu       

 

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Latest Videos

Conversations over a cuppa with CMO: Microsoft's Pip Arthur

​In this latest episode of our conversations over a cuppa with CMO, we catch up with the delightful Pip Arthur, Microsoft Australia's chief marketing officer and communications director, to talk about thinking differently, delivering on B2B connection in the crisis, brand purpose and marketing transformation.

More Videos

Hey there! Very interesting article, thank you for your input! I found particularly interesting the part where you mentioned that certain...

Martin Valovič

Companies don’t have policies to disrupt traditional business models: Forrester’s McQuivey

Read more

I too am regularly surprised at how little care a large swathe of consumers take over the sharing and use of their personal data. As a m...

Catherine Stenson

Have customers really changed? - Marketing edge - CMO Australia

Read more

The biggest concern is the lack of awareness among marketers and the most important thing is the transparency and consent.

Joe Hawks

Data privacy 2021: What should be front and centre for the CMO right now

Read more

Thanks for giving these awesome suggestions. It's very in-depth and informative!sell property online

Joe Hawks

The new rules of Millennial marketing in 2021

Read more

In these tough times finding an earning opportunity that can be weaved into your lifestyle is hard. Doordash fits the bill nicely until y...

Fred Lawrence

DoorDash launches in Australia

Read more

Blog Posts

Highlights of 2020 deliver necessity for Circular Economies

The lessons emerging from a year like 2020 are what make the highlights, not necessarily what we gained. One of these is renewed emphasis on sustainability, and by this, I mean complete circular sustainability.

Katja Forbes

Managing director of Designit, Australia and New Zealand

Have customers really changed?

The past 12 months have been a confronting time for marketers, with each week seemingly bringing a new challenge. Some of the more notable impacts have been customer-centric, driven by shifting priorities, new consumption habits and expectation transfer.

Emilie Tan

Marketing strategist, Alpha Digital

Cultivating engaging content in Account-based Marketing (ABM)

ABM has been the buzzword in digital marketing for a while now, but I feel many companies are yet to really harness its power. The most important elements of ABM are to: Identify the right accounts; listen to these tracked accounts; and hyper-personalise your content to these accounts to truly engage them. It’s this third step where most companies struggle.

Joana Inch

Co-founder and head of digital, Hat Media Australia

Sign in