JCPenney Names New Private Brand Czar

Plano, Texas  based department store JCPenney has promoted several members of its senior management team into new posts within its finance, sourcing and technology segments.

Michael Dastugue has been named evp and cfo; Ken Mangone is now evp of product development, design and sourcing; and Ed Robben has been appointed svp and chief information officer.

All three are members of JCP‘s executive board.

“These promotions reflect the strong bench of management talent in our organization and our commitment to training and promoting leadership across the company,” said Mike Ullman, chairman and ceo. “Michael, Ken and Ed each bring exceptional experience and expertise to their new positions, leading areas of critical importance and strength at JCPenney.”

Dastugue succeeds Robert Cavanaugh, who will be stepping down as cfo after 32 years with the mid-tier department store chain. Cavanaugh will serve as an adviser to Ullman to providing counsel in support of JCP’s long-term financial objectives, until his expected retirement in January 2012.

Mangone succeeds Peter McGrath, who retired December 31 after 37 years with JCP but will continue to be a key contributor to the retailer’s Supplier Council.

“On behalf of the board and entire JCPenney organization, I would like to thank Bob Cavanaugh and Peter McGrath for their many years of exceptional service,” Ullman added. “As cfo over the past decade, Bob has played a key role in maintaining JCPenney’s fiscal health during very challenging economic periods and positioning the company as a leader in terms of financial strength in the retail industry. Peter was instrumental in building the company’s design and sourcing organization, which has set the standard in the industry. They each trained outstanding successors and teams, which will result in a seamless transition in both of their roles.”

Dastugue is a finance executive who has developed broad experience across a range of critical functions since joining JCP in 1991, including corporate finance as treasurer and svp of property development, where he was responsible for the development of the company’s new store growth and renovations. Most recently, he was svp of finance, responsible for directing the financial strategies of all JCP business units, including more than 1,100 JCP stores, its international buying offices, logistics facilities and home office here.

In his new role, Mangone directs JCP product development, design and sourcing organization. His responsibilities include driving the success of JCP’s private and exclusive brands, which account for approximately 50% of the company’s annual sales. Mangone joined JCP in 1977, and over his tenure is credited with helping establish JCP’s private brands. Furthermore, he played key roles in both the development of the company’s central sourcing strategy prior to the launch of JCP’s sourcing organization in 1998, and most notably in the development of its private brand design organization. Under his leadership, JCP has also expanded its design talent from 80 to 230 people over the last four years, and established a robust recruitment and training program through which JCP recruits top talent from the best design schools in the country.

Robben is now responsible for JCP’s information technology platform, including the design and development of systems and infrastructure to ensure an exceptional online shopping experience. He joined the company in 2007 as svp of core applications development, and most recently directed information technology for the company’s merchant, sourcing, and direct organizations. Prior to joining JCP, he was a vice president at EDS, implementing technology solutions for the Navy Marine Corps Intranets (NMCI) program. Earlier, he previously served as a consultant at the Feld Group, an IT management consulting firm later acquired by EDS.

Dastugue and Mangone now report to Ullman. Robben reports to Tom Nealon, group executive vice president, who is responsible for, IT, corporate strategy and JCP’s digital ventures organization and previously held the CIO position.

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Christopher Durham
Christopher Durham is the president of My Private Brand and the co-founder of The Vertex Awards. He is a strategist, author, consultant and retailer who built brands at Delhaize-owned Food Lion, and lead strategy and brand development for Lowe’s Home Improvement. He has consulted with retailers around the world on their private brand portfolios including: Family Dollar, Petco, Staples, Office Depot, Best Buy, Metro (Canada), TLW (Taiwan) and Hola (Taiwan). Durham has published five definitive books on private brands, including his first book, Fifty2: The My Private Brand Project. In 2017, he will debut his newest book, Vanguard: Vintage Originals, a visual tour of innovation and disruption in private brand going back to the mid-1800’s. Dynamic in his presentation while down to earth and frank in his opinions, he has presented at numerous conferences, including FUSE, The Dieline Conference, Packaging that Sells, Omnishopper and PLMA’a annual trade show in Chicago. Durham lives in Charlotte, NC with his wife, Laraine, and two daughters, Olivia and Sarah.