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Lowdown: CMO Turnover Is Accelerating in 2016

Retail Industry Has Been Particularly Tumultuous, Russell Reynolds Finds in New Report


Advertising Age | August 3, 2016


The Advertising Age article, “Lowdown: CMO Turnover Is Accelerating in 2016,” featured Russell Reynolds Associates' research on CMOs in "Marketing Moves 2016: Q1-Q2." The article is excerpted below.​

Frequent CMO turnover has been a reality for quite some time now. But 2016 has been particularly tumultuous, according to a new report. Recruiting firm Russell Reynolds -- which routinely analyzes marketing executive moves -- found that marketing leader appointments and turnover reached its highest level in the first six months of 2016 in the four years the firm has been tracking moves. Russell Reynolds tracked 175 marketing leader appointments in the first half of 2016, compared with 147 in the prior six months and 134 in the same period last year, according to the report. The retail industry has experienced particularly high volatility. Among the top 30 U.S-based retailers by revenue, 48% have turned over their marketing leader in the past 12 months, according to the report. Retail accounted for 17% of CMO hires in the first half of 2016.

The volatility in retail is "undoubtedly the result of ongoing industry turmoil, as legacy brick-and-mortar retailers continue to adapt to the reality of multichannel commerce and the rapidly changing consumer landscape," the report stated. Retailers recently swapping CMOs include Gap, which put Craig Brommers at the helm; American Eagle Outfitters, whose new marketing leader is Kyle Andrew, formerly of Kate Spade. CMO exits occurred at Macy's, where Martine Reardon left; and Neiman Marcus, where Wanda Gierhart departed, according to Russell Reynolds' round-up.

To read the full article, click here.

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Lowdown: CMO Turnover Is Accelerating in 2016