Facing declining sales and with a potential bankruptcy filing on the horizon, children’s apparel retailer The Gymboree Corp. has tasked retail industry veteran Daniel Griesemer with turning around its financial fortunes.
Griesemer was named CEO of Gymboree, No. 392 in the Internet Retailer 2017 Top 500, on Monday. He takes over for Mark Weikel, who was named interim CEO in March and started in the position on April 3, two and a half months after the most recent permanent CEO, Mark Breitbard, transitioned out of the role.
Griesemer comes to Gymboree with years of experience in retail leadership, having served as president and CEO of multichannel apparel and accessories retailer Tilly’s Inc. (No. 347) before stepping down in October 2015. Before joining Tilly’s, Griesemer had served as president and CEO of women’s apparel retailer Coldwater Creek. He also has worked at Macy’s Inc. (No. 6) and Gap Inc. (No. 24).
“Dan’s proven leadership in the specialty-store sector, combined with his operational and financial experience, make him an ideal person to lead Gymboree into the future as the team works to establish a sustainable capital structure and position the company for long-term success,” Gymboree board member Lew Klessel said. “He is an agile and experienced retail executive with an established track record of building customer loyalty in an omnichannel environment.”
Griesemer faces an uphill climb at Gymboree. Bloomberg reported in April that the retailer is preparing to file for bankruptcy with a looming debt payment due on June 1. In March, the retailer reported that retail sales, which include online, through the first six months of its fiscal 2017 ended Jan. 28, of $629.2 million, down 5.5% from $665.9 million during the year-ago period. Gymboree also has posted a $335.8 million loss through the first six months of fiscal 2017 compared with a $32.9 million profit during the same period a year earlier. The retailer attributes that in part to a $368.1 million noncash goodwill and intangible impairment charge.
“The company started experiencing more difficult traffic and conversion trends beginning in the second quarter of fiscal 2017,” Gymboree wrote in its Q2 2017 earnings release. “The sustained difficult performance was not anticipated in previous projections that assumed an improvement in traffic and conversion trends. As a result, the company revised its long-term assumptions to reflect lower than previously projected revenue and margin growth trends in its Gymboree and Crazy 8 brands.”
According to Top500Guide.com, Gymboree generated an Internet Retailer-estimated $60.3 million in online sales in 2016, up 8.5% from $55.6 million the previous year.Favorite