Neiman Marcus intends to shut down its retail innovations lab. Called the Neiman Marcus iLabs, the platform had been operated by Scott Emmons since 2012. Emmons announced his departure from the retailer to join consultancy firm TheCurrent Global as he no longer believes retail innovation can happen in-house.

Operations continue to transform within Neiman Marcus. CEO Karen Katz retires effective tomorrow, and Geoffroy van Raemdonck, formerly of Ralph Lauren, will take her place. According to Retail Dive, van Raemdonck does not intend to keep the Neiman Marcus iLabs functioning.

Instead, the retailer has brought on David Goubert and Ginger Mollo, appointed respectively to the roles of Executive Vice President, Stores and Retail Experience and Senior Vice President of Retail Experience for the West Coast.

Goubert and Mollo are now tasked with improving the customer experience through personalization, engagement tools and innovative technology.

Van Raemdonck explained in a statement that Neiman Marcus' new strategy is to transform the retailer into "a luxury customer platform – focused on customer engagement across a luxury lifestyle."

While Emmons declared upon his departure from the company that retail is evolving too quickly for in-house teams to keep up with learning new technologies and insights, van Raemdonck seems confident that his innovation team is equipped.

"We believe innovation starts at the top, and we continue to recruit executives with outstanding performance track records who come from the best in class customer and digital-centric organizations to accelerate our transformation," he added.

 

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