Target Corp. has dismissed the president of its troubled Target Canada unit as part of leadership changes in its Canadian and U.S. operations.

Target Canada, president, Tony Fisher, Mark Schindele, discount store chain, Kathee Tesija, John Mulligan

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Target fires president of Canada operation

May 20th, 2014

MINNEAPOLIS – Target Corp. has dismissed the president of its troubled Target Canada unit as part of leadership changes in its Canadian and U.S. operations.

The discount store chain said Tuesday that current Target Canada president Tony Fisher is leaving the company, effective immediately, and will be replaced by Mark Schindele, senior vice president of merchandising operations.

Schindele will report to Kathee Tesija, chief merchandising and supply chain officer, whose responsibilities include Target Canada. A 15-year Target veteran, Schindele played a key role in launching new store formats — including PFresh, CityTarget and Target Express — and has enhanced Target's customer analytics and led multiple business categories and vendor partnerships, the retailer noted.

"We are grateful to Tony for leading Target's first international launch. One of our key priorities is improving performance in Canada more rapidly, and we believe it is important to be aggressive. We have a committed team who is focused on delivering an outstanding shopping experience to our Canadian guests and getting our performance on track," John Mulligan, interim president and chief executive officer of Target Corp., said in a statement. "Mark's broad understanding of the retail industry and his record of leading global operations will help accelerate efforts to drive improvements across our Canadian business."

Target entered Canada in 2013 and currently has 127 stores, with pharmacies operated under a franchise model. Thus far, Target Canada has performed well below the company's and financial analysts' expectations. For the fiscal 2013 fourth quarter and full year ended Feb. 1, the company reported losses before interest and taxes of $329 million and $941 million, respectively, for the Canadian operation. Target said that fiscal 2014 will be its first full year of operating stores in Canada and that starting with first-quarter 2014, the company will no longer exclude Canadian segment results from its adjusted earnings per share.

On Tuesday, Target announced that it also will be naming a nonexecutive chairman for Target Canada, who will serve in an advisory role to provide counsel and support to the president of Target Canada.

"Target is committed to making more rapid progress in Canada," Schindele stated, "and I am personally very excited about working alongside the team to improve operations and deliver a Target experience that will earn us the trust and loyalty of our Canadian guests."

Also on Target Canada's leadership team are Janna Adair Potts, senior vice president of stores and distribution; John Butcher, senior vice president of merchandising; Livia Zufferli, vice president of marketing; Tiffany Monroe, vice president of human resources; and Mark Wong, general counsel.

Target said Tuesday that, in the United States, it's promoting three senior merchandising leaders and realigning the team to better leverage functional expertise to drive improved performance. Trish Adams has been promoted to executive vice president of apparel and home, Jose Barra to executive vice president of essentials and hardlines, and Keri Jones to executive vice president of merchandising planning and operations

According to Target, the executive moves will further its efforts to drive U.S. traffic and sales, improve its Canadian operations and advance its digital strategy.

"Moving more quickly to bring bold, innovative ideas to the marketplace will help us connect with our guests in more meaningful ways," Tesija commented. "By realigning the merchandising team we can better leverage our senior-level leaders, be more agile and deliver for our guests with a greater sense of urgency."

Overall in the United States, Target operates 1,797 stores nationwide.