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Bath & Body Works Creates Two C-Suite Roles

Also announces CFO stepping down




iStock, Brett_Hondow

Bath & Body Works (Columbus, Ohio) announced it has hired former McDonald’s tech exec Thilina Gunasinghe for the newly created post of Chief Digital & Technology Officer, effective April 17, and that it is seeking to fill another new role, Chief Customer officer.

At the same time, the specialty retailer of personal and home fragrances announced that CFO Wendy Arlin will step down this summer, and that a search for her replacement has begun.

“Adding a dedicated Chief Digital & Technology Officer and Chief Customer Officer to our leadership team structure will help refine our focus as we work to expand our customer base, elevate our brand, further strengthen customer loyalty and ultimately drive growth and profitability,” CEO Gina Boswell said.

Gunasinghe joins the company from McDonald’s, where he was the global vice president, chief technology architect and data officer. In that capacity, he led the restaurant chain’s international customer, digital and restaurant technology architecture. His priorities at Bath & Body Works will include advancing digital capabilities and unlocking the potential of the company’s omnichannel model.

The new Chief Customer Officer’s responsibilities will include “growing and retaining Bath & Body Works’ passionate customer base through the development of a personalized, connected, and compelling end-to-end customer experience.”

In the company’s announcement, Boswell said Arlin was a key member of the team that led the successful spinoff from the Victoria’s Secret business, which established Bath & Body Works as a stand-alone public company.


The above changes come as the retailer is reworking its store footprint to grow in off-mall locations. Bath & Body Works said earlier this year it wants to close about 50 mall locations this year, but open 90 off-mall stores.

Bath & Body Works “is clearly in transition,” Wells Fargo analyst Ike Boruchow said in a note to investors, RetailDive reported in its coverage of the retailer’s latest moves. Boruchow and other analysts cited sales contractions, margins under pressure, the company’s investments following its separation from Victoria’s Secret “and many new executives.”



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