Kmart Searches for New CMO

Mark Snyder Departs After Three Years

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Kmart is on the hunt for a new chief marketing officer following the recent departure of Mark Snyder.

Mark Snyder
Mark Snyder
Mr. Snyder joined the retailer three years from Intercontinental Hotels Group. With his departure, Sears Holdings is once again without a full roster of senior marketing execs. The retailer briefly had chief marketers in place for Sears Holdings, Sears Roebuck and Kmart, following the appointment of Monica Woo as VP-CMO for Sears in August. She filled a slot that had been open since January 2010. David Friedman has served as senior VP-president of marketing for Sears Holdings since August 2010.

A Sears Holdings spokesman said the search is on for Mr. Snyder's successor. If recent hires are any indication, it's likely the retailer will look to a tech-savvy exec with a background in the digital space. Mr. Friedman was plucked from Razorfish, where he was president-Americas, and Ms. Woo was the chief marketing and strategy officer for FreshDirect, an online grocer.

Kmart joins several other major retailers on the hunt for chief marketers. Target , JCPenney and Old Navy are also without CMOs.

The marketer who takes the helm at Kmart will have significant challenges, as the retailer looks to win over cautious consumers already defecting to other retailers. Sears Holdings reported a $146 million loss during the second quarter, as well as flat sales at Kmart stores open at least a year.

DraftFCB, Chicago, has handled Kmart's $222 million creative account since 2007. However, since Minneapolis-based Peterson Milla Hooks took over the retailer's apparel and home business this spring, rumors have swirled about the stability of Kmart's relationship with DraftFCB.

Kmart is doing its best to squash those rumors. "As part of Sears Holdings' commitment to bring new and innovative creativity to both Sears and Kmart, earlier this year, Kmart added PMH as the agency for apparel and home," a Kmart spokesman said. "DraftFCB remains Kmart's lead strategic agency."

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