Ivan Wicksteed, who most recently served as chief marketer for Cole Haan, will take on the role of global chief marketing officer, overseeing marketing and store design. The Gap Inc.-owned retailer had been without a CMO since the summer of 2011.
Mr. Wicksteed will be relocating from New York to San Francisco, where he will report to Stefan Larsson, global president at Old Navy.
"Ivan's proven track record of success makes him a perfect fit for our brand," Mr. Larsson said. "We're thrilled to have him join our team."
Mr. Wicksteed has logged time on the client side at Cole Haan, Coca-Cola and Converse, as well as the agency side at TBWA/Chiat/Day, Los Angeles, and Ammirati Puris Lintas, London. At Cole Haan, he had been charged with giving the 85-year-old brand a fresh marketing perspective and clear identity. He's likely to face a similar task at Old Navy, which has had a variety of marketing approaches in the last five years.
On the heels of the departure of Amy Curtis-McIntyre, the brand's last CMO, Old Navy scrapped a music-marketing platform, "Old Navy Records," in favor of "Funnovations Inc." That campaign, featuring the tagline, "Come Fun, Come All," has been ongoing, though creative executions have shifted slightly. Early executions showed a factory where Old Navy products were created and tested, while more recent creative features 1980s and 1990s era stars like Jennie Garth, Luke Perry and Mr. T. Chevy Chase reprised his role as Clark Griswold for the retailer's holiday campaign. CP&B has handled the account since 2008.
The brand's measured media spending was down 13% in the first three quarters of 2012, compared to the three quarters of 2011. Old Navy's same-store sales in North America were up 13% in December, compared to a 4% decline in December 2011.