Kohl's announced Thursday that Bruce Besanko has decided to retire at the end of the fiscal year, and will step down as chief financial officer effective Nov. 1. Besanko joined Kohl's two years ago from Supervalu.
Upon his departure from the role, Jill Timm, Kohl's executive vice president of finance, will be promoted to the position, according to a company press release. Besanko will stay on as senior adviser until he leaves to assist with the transition and provide support for company initiatives.
Timm joined Kohl's in 1999 and has held multiple financial roles within the company. She has more than 25 years of finance experience in financial planning, analysis, accounting, capital planning, investor relations, treasury and tax, per the release. In the CFO position, she'll oversee financial planning and analysis, investor relations, financial reporting, accounting operations, tax and treasury, and will report directly to CEO Michelle Gass.
Besanko arrived just two years ago to serve under then-CEO Kevin Mansell.
At that time, the company was still focused on fairly aggressive cost-cutting measures in order to boost profits, and in a statement, Gass said that Besanko's work had "further strengthened our overall finance organization."
Since then, the retailer has embarked on several initiatives more fundamental to its business, including a revamp of its private labels, new partnerships with key and emerging brands and a somewhat controversial (though apparently successful) deal with Amazon to take the e-commerce giant's returns. The tie-up isn't just driving traffic, as executives have claimed, but also bringing in younger customers, according to research from GlobalData Retail.
One of these initiatives, announced earlier this year, is "Curated by Kohl's," a selection of products from emerging brands to be sold online and in more than 50 Kohl's stores, beginning in mid-October.
In its most recent quarter, Kohl's slipped as competition forced promotions. Revenue fell 3.1% to $4.4 billion, and store comps fell 2.9% year over year. Net income fell more precipitously, dropping 17% to $241 million, as gross margin declined 72 basis points to 38.8% from 39.5% in the year-ago quarter.