Brendan Hoffman is looking for a place to settle since he left his CEO position at Bon-Ton Stores last month. He may be returning to the Midwest, as Hoffman is said to be entertaining talks with Kohl's (NYSE:KSS) for a top position with the company.
The 45-year-old rising talent has already held some high-profile jobs and his name comes up as major retailers have vacancies, reported Women's Wear Daily.
Kohl's, based in Menomonee Falls, Wisconsin, has two top merchandising positions open. Donald Brennan left his position as chief merchandising officer last April and Peggy Eskenasi departed from her senior VP of product development position in August.
Hoffman was on JCPenney's radar earlier this year for the CEO position, but it did not materialize.
"Kohl's has a future. It just needs to be fixed," an investment banker told Women's Wear Daily. "Brendan could take the number-two job at Kohl's under Kevin Mansell (the 61-year old chairman and CEO), and eventually move up. He's already been a CEO a couple of times, but this would be a bigger job than the one he had at Bon-Ton or Lord & Taylor with an expectation of moving into the CEO role down the road."
Since working for Neiman Marcus, Lord & Taylor and Bon-Ton, Hoffman has amassed a good connection with brands and designers, a move that would greatly benefit Kohl's.
Kohl's has been pushing its e-commerce division in the past year. While the latest quarterly in-store sales were only up 1.1 percent, Web sales seem to be growing at a faster rate. The company reported a 23.1 percent increase from 2012 to 2013.
Should he accept a position with Kohl's, he'll have to get out of a one-year non-compete agreement with Bon-Ton.
-See this Women's Wear Daily article
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