Gap CEO Sonia Syngal Steps Down

Gap CEO Sonia Syngal Steps Down

Effective Immediately, Gap CEO Sonia Syngal Steps Down
Effective Immediately, Gap CEO Sonia Syngal Steps Down
Retail Bum

Retail Bum

Retail Bum

Retail Bum

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Gap has revealed that its chief executive officer (CEO) and president Sonia Syngal is stepping down after working nearly 18 years for the company.

“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,” said Syngal in a company statement.

“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.”

Syngal previously served under Gap’s Old Navy business. Later in March 2020, Syngal was appointed CEO of Gap, just days before COVID-19 started spreading across the U.S.

While Gap has begun its search for a permanent replacement, Bob Martin, the retailer’s current executive chairman of the board, has been appointed to serve as Gap Inc.’s interim president and CEO.

Martin brings more than 40 years of retail experience at corporations, including Dillard’s Inc. and Walmart, where he served as CEO of its international division.

Martin has also been on Gap’s board since 2002, first serving as lead independent director from 2003 to 2015 and then as an executive chairman since 2020.

In addition to Syngal’s departure, Gap has appointed Horacio “Haio” Barbeito as president and chief executive officer of Old Navy, effective August 1, 2022.

Prior to his appointment, Barbeito most recently served as president and CEO of Walmart Canada, where he led over 70,000 associates and was responsible for the retailer’s online business growth. Barbeito spent 26 years with Walmart serving under various leadership roles across merchandising, marketing, supply chain, and store operations with global experience in five countries.

Gap also updated its fiscal second-quarter guidance, revealing that it still expects sales to decline in the “approximately high single-digit range” and noted that higher promotional activity negatively impacted its gross margin. With that, the company forecasts its adjusted operating margin percentage in the second quarter to be between zero and slightly negative.

Gap still expects to incur an estimated $50 million in costs during the quarter related to air freight expenses and inflation.

After the news broke, Gap shares fell more than 4%.

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