E-Com Exec to Run Macy’s Stores, 100 Jobs Cut

A desire to make Macy’s department stores even more tech-friendly informed the hire of its new chief.

Hal Lawton, the former senior vice president of eBay North America, was named president of the Macy’s division of Macy’s Inc., it was announced on Aug. 21. Macy’s Inc also runs department stores Bloomingdale’s, e-commerce emporiums Macys.com and Bloomingdales.com, as well as off pricer Macy’s Backstage.

Lawton will officially start his job on Sept. 8. He will be responsible for merchandising, marketing, stores, operations, technology, and consumer insights and analytics for Macy’s. He will report to Jeff Gennette, Macy’s Inc chief executive officer.

“Hal Lawton has deep expertise at the intersection of retail and technology, a diverse set of business experiences that give him a unique perspective, and a track record of successfully driving a change agenda at scale. I’m thrilled that he has chosen to join Macy’s,” Gennette said.

“This is a key step as we look to further transform the business and work through the volatility of today’s retail landscape. Macy’s already has one of the strongest omni-channel businesses in the industry, and with Hal on the team, we will accelerate the integration of digital both online and in our stores to deliver the world-class experience our customers demand,” Gennette said.

Macy’s also announced that it will restructure its merchandising divisions, three formerly separate operations; merchandising, planning and private brands, will be reshaped into one division. This division will take care of categories such as ready-to-wear, beauty, men’s, kid’s, and home. Due to restructuring, 100 jobs will be cut.

Macy’s also announced that company veteran Jeff Kantor will lead the merchandising division. Kantor will report to Lawton, Gennette said.

“Macy’s best merchants will be in the right structure to operate at the speed of our customer and will be fueled by the power of data,” Gennette said. “Macy’s has long been known for innovation and excellence in merchandising. The changes we are making today maintain our core merchandising skills while massively simplifying our structure and processes for greater speed and flexibility. We are also further strengthening our consumer insights and data analytics capabilities so we can make better decisions faster, balancing the art and science of retail.”

Macy’s forecast one-time costs of $20 to $25 million due to restructuring. The company predicts that will save $30 million on an annual basis