Gap CFO Sabrina Simmons leaves

  • Strong signs for push-out forces
  • After almost nine years on the job
  • Laud, praise and thanks for Simmons
  • No successor named

(management-change.com) — San Francisco, California, November 02, 2016 — Sabrina Simmons, finance chief of Gap, leaves. As announced by Gap Inc. in a news release and in a regulatory filing published on Wednesday, November 02, 2016, Sabrina L. Simmons, chief financial officer, leaves the clothing and accessories retailer in a surprising move after almost nine years on the job, effective February 01, 2017.

Simmons will be employed by Gap until February 1, 2017 and will cease to hold the position of Executive Vice President, Chief Financial Officer, and principal accounting officer on a date prior to such date to be determined.

Gap did not name a replacement.

“To pursue the next chapter in her career”

Simmons’ departure is explained as follows. Art Peck, chief executive officer of Gap Inc. said: “Since I assumed the CEO role two years ago, Sabrina has been an instrumental partner in helping the company transition to a new leadership team. With that period of transition behind us, Sabrina and I agreed that this was an appropriate time for a change in the organization and for her to pursue the next chapter in her career.”

The phrase “to pursue the next chapter in her career” is often used in corporate announcements and opens the door to speculation.

Gap said: “Sabrina Simmons, Executive Vice President, Chief Financial Officer, and principal accounting officer will leave the Company.”

Precise information about the future plans of Simmons was not immediately available.

Share price decline

The change follows a decline in the share price of Gap Inc. since March 2015.

Chaired by Robert Fisher

Gap Inc. is chaired by Robert J. Fisher.

Art Peck serves as CEO of Gap Inc. He joined Gap Inc. in 2005 and has held senior leadership positions across nearly every area of the company. On October 8, 2014, Art Peck was named as Glenn Murphy’s successor as Gap Inc. CEO, effective February 1, 2015.

On the job as CFO since 2008

Sabrina Simmons is Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Gap Inc.

In this role, she oversees real estate, loss prevention and all global financial departments, including controllership, corporate financial planning and analysis, investor relations, treasury, tax, risk management, internal audit and the corporate shared service center, and also has accountability for brand finance along with the company’s brand presidents.

Since joining Gap Inc. in 2001, Simmons has progressed through positions of increasing responsibility from vice president and treasurer to executive vice president.

Simmons was appointed CFO in January 2008.

During her tenure, she has been instrumental in instilling financial discipline throughout the organization and developing the capital structure framework that has delivered increasing shareholder distributions while maintaining a strong balance sheet.

Before coming to Gap, Simmons was chief financial officer and an executive member of the Board of Directors of Sygen International PLC, a British genetics company.

Prior to Sygen, Simmons spent five years at Levi Strauss & Co., where she was assistant treasurer. She also spent several years at Hewlett Packard Company and KPMG.

Simmons received her B.S. in Finance from the University of California, Berkeley where she was also bestowed the award of Regent Scholar, and received her M.B.A. from the Anderson School at the University of California, Los Angeles.

Simmons currently serves on the Haas School of Business Advisory Board.

Simmons is a member of the Gap Foundation Board of Trustees.

Unplanned

Generally speaking, when a top leader announces to step down with no successor available, it is a sign that the move was unexpected and too early.

Strong signs for push-out forces

It is not completely certain what forces eventually triggered Sabrina L. Simmons’ move.

The Push-out Score™ determined by management-change.com suggests strong signs for push-out forces that may have contributed to the management change.

Read the full story in the management-change.com report 41.2016 ($).