Macy’s has appointed Sam Archibald as general business manager of apparel, a critical slot especially in light of the department store retailer’s stepped up efforts to appeal to a younger, stylish crowd.
The retailer indicated that Archibald, a veteran of Macy’s, will oversee all aspects of the brand’s apparel strategy across men’s, women’s and kids. Archibald will report to Nata Dvir, Macy’s chief merchandising officer. He most recently served as president of retail/outlets, North America, for Calvin Klein and began his career as a trainee in Macy’s executive development program.
“Sam started his retail and fashion career with Macy’s and spent more than a decade with our merchant organization,” Dvir said in a statement. “He brings breadth of experience to this role, with acumen in merchandising, digital, planning, private brands, off-price and stores. He has strong vendor relationships, industry credibility and a laser-focus on the customer to increase market share across our apparel business. We look forward to seeing the impact he will have on our continued evolution.”
Archibald succeeds Mark Stocker who is no longer with the company.
Generally, women’s ready-to-wear hasn’t been a bright spot at Macy’s. It’s been criticized as predictable, too dependent on widely distributed labels and lacking distinction. But over the past year or so, there’s been a string of initiatives to add relevancy, exclusivity and a more youthful appeal to the presentation.
In July, Macy’s introduced a contemporary private brand called “And Now This” with an assortment of men’s and women’s styles described by officials as “effortlessly wearable elevated basics and sophisticated pieces at affordable prices.” Online, Macy’s recently created a contemporary sitelet in men’s and women’s, and enhanced the beauty presentation by adding social media channels and virtual try-on. Livestreaming initiatives are also part of the strategy.
Last May, Macy’s Inc. chairman and chief executive officer Jeff Gennette told WWD that the company has become “hyper-focused” on goods and platforms attractive to consumers under 40, and he cited contemporary fashion, along with toys, health and fitness, as part of the agenda. Asked what percentage of Macy’s customer base is under 40, Gennette replied, “When you look at the total, it’s not as high as we want. We’ve got a strategic playbook on how to get it higher.”
Macy’s Inc.’s divisions include Macy’s, Bloomingdale’s and Bluemercury.