SAN FRANCISCO — July 11, 2022 — Gap Inc. announced today that President and CEO Sonia Syngal will step down from her position and from the company’s board, departing the company following a brief transition.
“Leading this great company and our 100,000-strong employees since 2020, through unprecedented challenges for our industry, and society, has been an immense honor. Through it all, Gap Inc. and its dedicated teams have seized change as an opportunity, restructured for future growth, crystallized unique brand identities rooted in cultural relevance and fiercely chased transformation,” Syngal said. “With an exceptional and industry-leading CEO for Old Navy now appointed, I am thankful to have the board’s support in stepping down, ushering in a new opportunity for fresh perspective and rejuvenated leadership to carry Gap Inc. forward.
“The company’s co-founders, Doris and Don Fisher, created a lasting and undeniable legacy for Gap Inc. as a company with a heart. It is a home for creatives, innovators, data scientists, operators and customer advocates, to build their careers and break boundaries, just as it enabled me to do the same,” Syngal added.
“My fellow board members and I want to thank Sonia for her steadfast leadership and many contributions to Gap Inc. during her 18 years with us. Most notably, amidst significant global disruption, social unrest and economic instability, Sonia had an immediate impact as Gap Inc. CEO, establishing a clear strategic direction and cultural identity that has united this global enterprise as a force for good with powerful brands poised to stand the test of time,” said Mr. Martin. “While a search is underway, the Board has complete confidence in the formidable leadership team to guide the company through this transition. And I look forward to championing this incredible team as they continue to write Gap Inc.’s next chapter with grit and passion.”
Effective immediately, Bob Martin, the company’s current executive chairman of the board, will serve as Gap Inc. president and CEO on an interim basis. Mayo Shattuck will continue to serve as lead independent director.
Bob Martin is a 40-year industry veteran with extensive retail experience at corporations including Dillard’s Inc. and Walmart where he served as CEO of its International division. He has served on the Gap Inc. Board since 2002, as lead independent director from 2003 to 2015, and as executive chairman since 2020. Mr. Martin brings significant global governance and executive management experience as well.
Horacio Barbeito to Serve as Old Navy President and CEO
The company also announced that Horacio “Haio” Barbeito will join the Gap Inc. Leadership Team as president and chief executive officer of Old Navy, where he will lead the brand in delivering on its unique value proposition, offering style, fit, quality and cultural relevance at jaw-dropping prices. Barbeito will join Old Navy on August 1.
“Haio is a true multi-disciplined retail leader who shares our vision of bringing the democracy of style and service to millions of Old Navy customers, leveraging our greatest assets – our people and our product. We are thrilled for Haio to bring his authentic leadership style to the team, backed by a strong track record of delivering growth through challenging times at complex global organizations,” said Mr. Martin. “Particularly in this environment, Haio’s sincere customer empathy, operational excellence, and passion for product and marketing innovation, will fuel Old Navy’s competitive strengths on its path to $10 billion, rooted in fun, family, fashion and value.”
Barbeito most recently served as president and CEO of Walmart Canada where he led more than 70,000 associates and drove significant growth in the online business. During his 26-year career at Walmart, he served in a variety of leadership roles across merchandising, marketing, supply chain and store operations with global experience in five countries. He has served in CEO roles at Walmart for 10 years, first as President and CEO of Walmart Argentina and Chile before taking the role as CEO of Walmart Canada where he has spearheaded a modernization effort to grow that market’s omnichannel business. He holds a bachelor’s degree from Universidad Argentina Empresa.
Update on Second Quarter Fiscal 2022
The company is expecting net sales in the second quarter fiscal 2022 to decline in the approximately high-single digit range, relatively in-line with its prior expectations.
The company continues to navigate margin headwinds and, as previously communicated, still expects to incur an estimated $50 million of transitory incremental air freight expense in the quarter as well as inflationary costs on raw materials and freight. In addition, it has taken a more aggressive approach to assortment balancing resulting in increased promotional activity during the quarter, which it expects will have a negative impact on gross margin in the quarter.
Furthermore, the company now anticipates second quarter fiscal 2022 adjusted operating margin percentage to be zero to slightly negative.
The company has not completed its quarter closing and review process and the final results for the second quarter fiscal 2022 may differ from the statements made in this press release. The company will be providing further details on its second quarter fiscal 2022 financials as well as its outlook when it reports second quarter fiscal 2022 results on Thursday, August 25.
Posted: July 12, 2022
Source: Gap Inc.