Richard Dickson, Who Modernized Barbie, Becomes Gap CEO

Richard Dickson, Who Modernized Barbie, Becomes Gap CEO

News by Anja PaspaljAnja Paspalj
Published: August 02, 2023

Gap may be a step closer to a comeback. After nearly a year without an appointed CEO, Gap has hired Richard Dickson to take on the role.

Best known for refreshing the Barbie brand as the CEO of Mattel, which he has been with for twenty years, Dickson is now shifting his sights to the clothing corporation which has faced ongoing struggles.

With the Barbie movie being the last Mattel project under his belt, Dickson is waving goodbye to the iconic toy company with a streak of successful projects behind him.

Screenshot from the Barbie movie

"It’s the work ahead that excites me most, the chance to work hand-in-hand with the teams to evolve Gap for a new era,” he said in an official release.

Set to begin his reign at Gap on August 22, expectations are set high for Richard Dickson with hopes that he will be able to revive the 54-year-old all-American retail corporation.

Gap’s continuous decline has forced its retail brands, such as Gap and Banana Republic, to shut 30% of their clothing stores in North America by 2024.

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A post shared by Gap (@gap)

Before Richard Dickson’s appointment as Gap’s new CEO, Sonia Syngal held the position between 2020 and 2022 without much improvement for the brand.

As a brand that enjoyed its peak of fame during the 1990s with the spread of malls, Gap, Old Navy, Banana Republic, and Athleta have since been in a constant state of crisis with the ever-evolving retail landscape.

Whether Dickson will be able to carry the success he implemented in modernizing Mattel, specifically the Barbie brand, to improve Gap’s brand positioning remains to be seen.

Edited by Nikola Djuric

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