Dallas–Neiman Marcus Group Inc. reported Monday that Karen Katz would succeed Burton Tansky as president and ceo. While it is no surprise that Katz was expected to succeed Tansky, the news that he will retire as soon as Oct. 6 came as a surprise to many.
Katz, 53, is currently chairman and ceo of Neiman Marcus stores. A native of Dallas, she began her career as a management trainee at Foley’s department store in Houston. Katz has been ceo at Neiman Marcus stores since 2002 and in 2007 was named to office of the chairman, a signal that she would be Tansky’s successor. She joined the company in 1985 as an assistant store manager in Houston and in 1991 became general manager of the North Park Center store. .
“Now that we’ve gotten through the recession, we can think about growth,” Katz told the Dallas Morning News. “We’re the next generation of leaders of this amazingly powerful brand.”
Upon his retirement, Tansky, 72, will become non-executive chairman of the board for the privately-held company.
The group also announced that James Gold, president and ceo of Bergdorf Goodman, will be named as president of specialty retail, a new position, where he will be responsible for merchandising and store operations for 41 Neiman Marcus stores and Bergdorf Goodman.
James Skinner, executive vice president and chief financial officer of Neiman Marcus Group, will become executive vice president, chief operation officer and chief financial officer. Gold, Skinner and Gerald Barnes, president of Neiman Marcus Direct, will all report to Katz.
Although Neiman’s results have shown signs of improvement over the past several months, the privately held Dallas-based chain has been hindered by 18 months of declining comparable-store sales. The company has a reported $3 billion debt, a result of its $5.1 billion leveraged buyout by private-equity firms Warburg Pincus and Texas Pacific Group in 2005.