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Gap Names Wyatt President of Struggling Old Navy

Gap announced Thursday that it has named Tom Wyatt, a 30-year retail veteran, president of its struggling Old Navy chain.

Wyatt, 53, had served as acting president of Old Navy since February, when Dawn Robertson stepped down after struggling for 16 months to turn the division around. Wyatt, who joined the company in early 2006, previously ran the company's outlet division.

The San Francisco-based company, which also operates Banana Republic and Gap stores, also said that Art Peck will succeed Wyatt as president of the division that operates Gap Outlet and Banana Republic Factory stores. He had been interim president of the outlet division since February.

Both Wyatt and Peck, 52, will continue to report to Glen Murphy, the company's president and CEO.

Gap has faced more than three years of sagging sales that have battered the company's stock and resulted in a series of management shake-ups. But the 1,062-store Old Navy chain, which focuses on discount clothing, has been the biggest drag on Gap during this weak period.

(Watch the accompanying video to find out more about Tom Wyatt, the new president of Gap's Old Navy...)

For the second quarter ended Aug. 4, the company suffered a 10 percent decline in overall same-store sales, or stores open at least a year, but Old Navy suffered the sharpest drop: 16 percent. Gap North America and Banana Republic each had a 6 percent decline. Same-store sales are considered a key indicator of a retailer's health.

Gap is slated to report its second-quarter financial results after the market closes on Thursday.

In a statement, Murphy called Wyatt "the ideal business leader for Old Navy."

"Tom unified the organization and brought renewed focus to our customer target, while making the tough changes necessary to get the brand back on track," Murphy said.

Gap plans to name an executive-level merchant for Old Navy who will work closely with Wyatt in guiding the product strategy for the brand, Murphy said.

Before joining Gap, Wyatt served in such roles as president and CEO of a mid-size athletic apparel company and as president of Warnaco Intimate Apparel.

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