Home Kohl’s, JCPenney Reinforce Strategic Management Ranks
February 9, 2023

Kohl’s, JCPenney Reinforce Strategic Management Ranks

Posted In: Retail Articles

Two mid-tier department stores have made major executive appointments as Kohl’s named Nick Jones (pictured above, right) chief merchandising and digital officer, and JCPenney appointed Keith Melker (pictured above, left) chief transformation and strategy officer. 

Jones will supervise Kohl’s overall merchandise strategy and all merchandising functions including buying, digital and omnichannel merchandising as well as product design and development, and product portfolio strategy, the company pointed out. He will drive Kohl’s strategy based on being the destination for the active and casual lifestyle through a compelling offering of national and proprietary brands.

Jones has more than 25 years of merchandising, brand, retail, and leadership experience, Kohls noted, including as CEO of Joules Group, a premium British lifestyle operation based in the United Kingdom that sells online, at 130 stores through 1,500 wholesale outlet partners including Nordstrom and Dillard’s. Before that, Jones managed the multi-billion dollar George brand for ASDA/Walmart UK and served as the chief merchant. Earlier, he held a variety of business and merchandise leadership positions at Marks & Spencer, where he was involved in the home, beauty and women’s categories.

“We are very excited to have Nick join our team and lead our merchandising organization as we continue our focus on the active and casual lifestyle while also accelerating our focus on product newness and innovation,” said Tom Kingsbury, Kohl’s newly minted CEO, in announcing the appointment. “Nick has a tremendous wealth of experience in merchandising, retail, global sourcing and business leadership. During his career, Nick’s been the chief merchant for one of the U.K.’s biggest retailers, led multiple categories for department store Marks & Spencer, and was a key leader in the category and international expansion of the multi-billion dollar George brand. As we continue to build on our key national brands, enhance our proprietary product portfolio and drive newness for customers, we are confident that he is the right fit for our organization, our team and our customers.”

Melker will oversee the JCPenney transformation office, ensuring execution of company initiatives, and define corporate strategy as JCPenney continues its reinvention, the company maintained. He also will optimize corporate processes and initiate strategic partnerships that deepen the company’s relationship with America’s diverse, working families. Key areas of focus include driving profitable consumer traffic, enhancing inventory management, advancing digital growth and evolving the value delivery model.

Melker most recently served as CEO for Wehner Multifamily, a Texas-based property management company, after holding the position of chief strategy officer for Kimberly-Clark Corp. Before that, he was a Boston Consulting Group managing director and partner.

“As we continue our transformation journey into 2023, we’re laser-focused on achieving our goals to better serve our customers as they turn to JCPenney for style and value,” Marc Rosen, JCPenney CEO stated. “Keith’s extensive experience in transformation work and strategic leadership abilities will make him a valued advisor in this next step for our organization.”

JCPenney added that Katie Mullen will remain chief digital office.

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