It took a while, but irate consumers finally got revenge on the retailer that caused so much damage to their credit reports last year. Gregg Steinhafel, the chairman and CEO of Target during the retailer's massive breach of customer data last year, has left the company effective immediately, the retailer announced today.
"Today we are announcing that, after extensive discussions, the board and Gregg Steinhafel have decided that now is the right time for new leadership at Target," a company statement posted on its website Monday morning says.
John Mulligan, Target's chief financial officer, has been appointed as interim president and chief executive officer.
Steinhafel, a 35-year veteran of Target, will serve in an advisory capacity during the transition. Target said in December that hackers stole credit and debit card information of more than 40 milion customers—millions of customers who say they won't be back.
In a March consumer tracking survey conducted by Cowen & Co., Target’s scores dropped 3.3 percentage points to 71% with the score among upper-income shoppers falling a “dramatic” 9 percentage points to 70%, the survey of 2,500 shoppers showed. It also found that customer satisfaction with Target’s pricing, selection and product quality all declined from a year earlier.
Even worse, the December credit breach came just as Target's customer service was declining due to the company's "ongoing efforts" to control expenses amid declines in traffic and sales.