From Gap to GameStop, there’s a retail executive exodus underway — and more departures are coming

“There’s a lot of concern heading into the third quarter and fourth. It’s not getting easier soon,” he said.

A survey of 3,000 business executives this fall by AlixPartners found that 72% of CEOs said they were worried about losing their jobs in 2022 due to disruption. That’s up from the 52% who said the same in 2021.

As the retail sector stares down an increasingly challenging landscape, experts say executive shakeups will likely become more common. Stimulus spending that boosted sales during the pandemic will no longer mask any underlying business struggles. Surging inflation is raising worries that shoppers will pull back on spending. And after the strain of the past two years, some executives are ready for a change of pace.

“Retail CEOs are going to have to earn their seats and earn their money, because their jobs just got a lot harder in the last six months,” said John San Marco, a senior research analyst covering the retail industry at Neuberger Berman.

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