NEW YORK - Terry J. Lundgren, the personable chairman and chief executive officer of Neiman Marcus in Dallas, will become chairman and ceo of Federated Merchandising, based here, on April 11.
Lundgren, 41, is considered the protege of Allen I. Questrom, the 53-year-old chairman and ceo of Federated with whom he worked twice before, once at Bullock's, once at Neiman's. With Tuesday's announcement of his appointment to Federated, Lundgren became one of the leading contenders to one day succeed Questrom. "This is the kind of opportunity that I believe may not come around again in the near future," Lundgren said Tuesday. "It is a key job in the company, and one that I think is going to be a real experience for me. Running the merchandising division is a completely different type of challenge and that's always exciting.
"I've loved running Neiman Marcus. It's been a fantastic experience."
The Federated announcement confirmed reports in WWD and other publications on Feb. 1.
Neiman's said Lundgren will stay at the store until his contract expires in early April. The company said a search has begun for his successor.
Industry observers said there is only a short list of executives with top-level experience in high-end retailing that could qualify as Lundgren's successor. Among them are Burton Tansky, chairman and ceo of Bergdorf Goodman, Rose Marie Bravo, president of Saks Fifth Avenue, and Joseph Cicio, chairman and ceo of I. Magnin. Tansky and Cicio declined to comment about that possibility. Bravo could not be reached.
In the endless game of retailing's musical chairs, there was speculation that if Tansky moved to Neiman's, Cicio would be a candidate to run Bergdorf's.
Neiman's and Bergdorf's are divisions of the Neiman Marcus Group, which is controlled by Harcourt General Inc.
Herbert Mines Associates is handling the search for Neiman's, adding to the likelihood that the chain will go outside its ranks to select a new ceo. The number two merchant there is Janet Gurwitch, executive vice president of women's.
Questrom first hired Lundgren in 1975, as an executive trainee at Bullock's. In 1988, he recruited him to Neiman Marcus as an executive vice president for stores. Questrom held the ceo spots at Bullock's and Neiman's, and became Federated's ceo in 1990.
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