Macy’s CFO Karen Hoguet leaves

  • Push-out Score suggests push-out forces
  • After around 21 years in the position
  • Accolades, praise and thanks for Hoguet
  • Search for a successor

(exechange) — Cincinnati, Ohio, April 4, 2018 — Karen Hoguet, finance chief of Macy’s, leaves. As announced by Macy’s, Inc. in a news release on Wednesday, April 4, 2018, Karen M. Hoguet, Chief Financial Officer, leaves the department store company after around 21 years in the position, effective in February 2019.

It is the end of an era.

Among the 3,000 largest publicly held companies incorporated in the U.S. based on market capitalization, the average tenure of the CFOs who departed over the past 12 months was 6.2 years, according to data compiled by exechange. Only 5 percent of the CFOs who departed over the past 12 months left the position after more than 15 years.

Hoguet’s move comes 12 months after Jeff Gennette took over as CEO of Macy’s, Inc.

Furthermore, Hoguet’s move comes two months after Jeff Gennette took over as Chairman of Macy’s, Inc.

Macy’s will undertake a search for a successor.

Long goodbye

It is a long goodbye. The announcement of Hoguet’s move comes up to 10 months prior to her planned departure from the post of CFO.

In general, a top executive who announces the departure very early may be considered a lame duck.

Lengthy lead times give boards extra time to find replacements, and they also create uncertainty.

No reason given

In the announcement, Macy’s did not explicitly explain the reason for Hoguet’s move, opening the door for speculation.

Precise information about Hoguet’s future plans was not immediately available.


Macy’s said: “Karen Hoguet, Chief Financial Officer since 1997, has decided to retire in February 2019, at the completion of the company’s fiscal year.”

Share price decline

The change follows a decline in the share price of Macy’s, Inc. since July 2015.

Chaired by Jeff Gennette

Macy’s, Inc. is chaired by Jeff Gennette.

Jeff Gennette was elected chief executive officer of Macy’s, Inc. in March 2017 and assumed the role of chairman in February 2018. Gennette previously held the role of president of Macy’s, Inc. since 2014.

In the position of CFO since 1997

Karen M. Hoguet has been the Chief Financial Officer of Macy’s, Inc. since October 31, 1997.

Hoguet began her career at Federated Department Stores in 1982 and was appointed to the role of Chief Financial Officer in 1997.

All of the company’s finance and accounting functions report to Hoguet.

In addition, she has administrative responsibility for the internal audit function.

Hoguet joined the company as a senior consultant in marketing and long-range planning after leaving the Boston Consulting Group in 1982.

In 1985, she was named director of capital and business planning, and in 1987, was promoted to operating vice president for planning and financial analysis.

A year later, she was elected a corporate vice president and became senior vice president of planning in 1991.

Hoguet added the title of corporate treasurer a year later.

In 1997, she was elected senior vice president and chief financial officer, and promoted to executive vice president and chief financial officer in 2005.

Hoguet will continue in her role as CFO until her successor is appointed. She will then remain in an advisory role to support the company during a transition period until February 2, 2019.


As a general rule, when a top manager announces to step down with no successor in place, it’s a signal that the change was unexpected and too early.

Push-out Score suggests push-out forces

It is not completely certain what forces eventually triggered Karen Hoguet’s move.

The Push-out Score™ determined by exechange suggests that push-out forces may have contributed to the change.

Read the full story in the exechange report 15.2018 ($).