Ask Gap Inc. (GPS) CEO Arthur Peck about the future of the giant retailer, and it’s all about big changes.
For starters, he’s brought in a new CEO to run the Gap division and he’s counting on him to reshape the iconic brand and restore growth. Neil Fiske, who took charge of the division in late June, has a reputation for transforming retail brands like Eddie Bauer and Bath and Body Works.
“He understands the brand. He understands the aesthetic,” says Peck. “I think he has an amazing opportunity here with a great brand to really make Gap brand in a moment in time where the brand’s place should be here and now. Bring it back to relevance.”
Part of that comeback strategy will mean more store closings of Gap and Banana Republic, but also new store openings of Old Navy and Athleta. Speaking with Fortune, Peck didn’t say when all this will happen or how many stores will be shuttered. Today there are nearly 3,600 Gap, Banana Republic, Old Navy and Athleta stores around the world. With annual revenues of about $16 billion, Gap is ranked number 181 on the Fortune 500 list of America’s biggest companies.
Peck says he is shopping for an acquisition, hinting he is “super interested” in athletic wear or what he calls the “performance lifestyle space.”
“I love Athleta,” Peck says. “That’s the hint I would give.”
Watch the video above for more from our interview with Peck.