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SAN FRANCISCO – US casualwear retailer, Gap Inc, has followed in the footsteps of H&M by appointing a female CEO. Sonia Syngal, an accomplished retail leader and CEO of the portfolio’s Old Navy business since 2016, will become the company’s next chief executive officer from March 23. She will also join the company’s board of directors. Syngal’s top priority will be strengthening the performance of the portfolio. Two new members have also joined to Gap’s board, Elizabeth Smith and Amy Miles.

Only recently, Helena Helmersson became the first CEO of H&M. The news means two of the world’s four largest apparel retailers now have female CEOs.

“To lead the company into its next chapter, we sought a dynamic leader who could bring a deep respect for our customers and make the decisions necessary to deliver value from our portfolio of brands over the long term,” said Bob Fisher, interim Gap Inc. CEO and current chair of the Gap Inc. board of directors. “Sonia has all of the characteristics and experiences needed to effectively execute against the work ahead. She is an excellent operator who drives innovation and decisive action, and she leads with both vision and heart.”

“It’s an honour to build on this company’s rich heritage and lead our nearly 130,000 employees in transforming our business and operations to successfully compete in the future,” said Syngal. “I’m committed to fully realising the potential of our portfolio and the advantage of our scale, with a focus on strengthening the love that our millions of customers have for our brands. To do that, we must better prioritize initiatives and capabilities that will improve execution and drive value creation.”

Gap also announced that board member Bobby Martin will take the role of executive chairman, effective March 23. Martin has extensive experience in the retail world, having served as president and CEO of Wal-Mart International, as a former director at Dillard’s Inc., and as a member of the Gap Inc. Board of Directors since 2002.

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