The president and chief executive officer of Target Gregg Steinhafel quit on Monday as the retailer continues to grapple with a tainted image close to five months after a huge data breach during the holiday season.
Steinhafel also resigned as the chairman of the company’s board. Target’s current chief financial officer, John Mulligan, will take over as interim president and CEO. Current board member Roxanne Austin is the new interim chair.
“Today we are announcing that, after extensive discussions, the board and Gregg Steinhafel have decided that now is the right time for new leadership at Target,” the company posted on its site on Monday.
Steinhafel, 59, has served at target for 35 years and remains to serve as an advisor during the transition phase. In a SEC filing, the retailer said its former chief will access a severance pay. The statement added that the company’s board has not determined how much total compensation Steinhafel gets, USA Today said.
Brian Sozzi, boss of Belus Capital Advisors, was of the opinion that Steinhafel should have quit a few months ago. He said that the latest developments are an indication of the firm’s determination to resolve the customer data breach issue once and for all.
Target revealed in December that an attack on its database via the internet had caused the loss of 40 million payment card numbers and other elements of customer data amounting to 70 million pieces, according to Reuters.
Mulligan has been vocal on the breach on behalf of the company. He has appeared before congressional hearings where he faced questioning for details of Target’s data security enforcement; how the company became of aware of the violation of its own systems and how soon it informed the public.
Target spokesperson Dustee Jenkins said Mulligan was given the new responsibility as interim CEO because he did well in helping the firm recover from the breach.
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