KMART NAMES NEW CHIEF MARKETING OFFICER

Move Comes as Retailer Grapples with Martha Stewart Conviction Fallout

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NEW YORK (AdAge.com) -- Kmart today named Paul Guyardo its marketing chief, replacing Karen Austin, who returns to her original post as chief information officer.
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Martha Stewart
The move comes as the troubled retailer must manage the short- and long-term marketing impact of Martha Stewart's conviction. Ms. Stewart is the chain's icon brand representative.

Mr. Guyardo, formerly executive vice president of TV and marketing at the HSN cable network, will join the company in late March. Mr. Guyardo, whose title will be senior vice president and chief marketing officer, will report to President-CEO Julian Day and work with Chief Apparel Officer John Goodman and Chief Creative Officer Lisa Schultz.

Redefining itself
The Troy, Mich.-based retailer has been struggling to define itself while working its way through bankruptcy proceedings. One of its most important strategies has been a branded line of Martha Stewart Everyday label products. Last week Ms. Stewart was convicted of four counts related to stock transactions, and the impact on her brand and related properties is expected to be disastrous.

While Martha Stewart Everyday is one of the most visible brands in Kmart's assortment, the retailer has recently expanded its selection with the addition of brands such as Joe Boxer and Thalia Sodi.

Ms. Austin had been acting as chief marketing officer since last summer; she was in charge of an advertising agency search that ended with the hiring of a cluster of Grey Global Group agencies.

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