Nordstrom Chief Financial Officer Anne Bramman will step down after five years of serving in the role, the company said in an unexpected announcement late Monday evening.
Bramman joined Nordstrom's (ticker: JWN) executive team in June 2017, helping the company navigate a series of economic challenges , including the Covid-19 pandemic. Her last day with the company will be Dec. 2.
"It has been a privilege to work alongside our leadership team and the many talented individuals throughout the company," Bramman said. "With Nordstrom well positioned for success, I felt that this is the right time to transition to the next chapter in my career."
Bramman's departure came as a surprise for many on Wall Street, wrote Jefferies analyst Ashley Helgans. The company didn't specify why Bramman was stepping down.
Management departures are worth keeping an eye on. They can serve as a warning that the board of a company is dissatisfied with financial performance. Indeed, many C-Suite executives have opted to leave —or been shown the door—over the last few months as the economy slows down. That trend has been salient among embattled retailers, such as Bed Bath & Beyond (BBBY) and Gap (GPS).
Nordstrom's financial position isn't as precarious. Even though it recently lowered its financial outlook for 2022, the company reiterated its guidance on Monday. Management expects revenue growth of between 5% and 7% and adjusted earnings per share of between $2.30 and $2.60.
The company also adopted a one-year shareholder rights plan, called a poison pill, in late September to prevent any unsolicited takeover bids.
Nordstrom appointed Chief Accounting Officer Michael Maher to assume the role of interim CFO while the retailer conducts an internal and external search process. Maher joined Nordstrom in 2009 and has since undertaken various leadership positions within the company, including senior vice president of finance.
"We are encouraged the company reaffirmed its guide and believe JWN is better positioned than peers to weather macro volatility due to its exposure to a higher-income consumer ," Helgans wrote.