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Chuck Rubin out as CEO of Michaels Companies

The Michaels Company is looking for a new chief executive.

The nation’s largest arts and crafts retailer announced that Chuck Rubin has “mutually agreed” with the board to resign as CEO. Michaels has appointed 30-year retail veteran Mark S. Cosby as interim CEO and board member, effective Feb. 28. Rubin will continue as chairman of Michaels until April 1, 2019. The retailer has begun a search for a permanent chief executive.

Michaels gave no reason for the abrupt departure of Rubin, who was appointed CEO and chairman in March 2013. He oversaw the chain’s return to the public sector and helped reduce its debt from a leveraged buyout in 2005. Prior to Michaels, Rubin served as president and CEO of Ulta Beauty from 2010 to 2013.

“We thank Chuck [Rubin] for his leadership for the past six years and his commitment to improving the customer experience, reinforcing our financial strength and investing in new digital capabilities," said James Quella, lead director of the board of Michaels. “We look forward to working with Mark and the management team to continue to offer an environment that nurtures creativity and encourages customers to shop, create and connect with other makers.”

Cosby joins Michaels Companies following a 30-year career at a number of leading retail chains, most recently as president, North America at Office Depot from 2014 to 2016. Prior to that, he served as president, retail at CVS Caremark Corporation, where he was responsible for all aspects of the $65 billion retail business. Prior to CVS, Cosby spent five years at Macy’s, where he served in several executive roles, including president, stores.

Michaels also announced that it has appointed Philo T. Pappas as interim president - merchandising and supply chain. Pappas has been with the company since 2009, most recently serving as president - Michaels Stores Procurement Company.

The company reaffirmed the guidance it provided on January 30, 2019. It continues to expect comparable store sales for the fourth quarter will be near the lower end of its previously provided guidance range of -0.5% to 0.5%, which includes an estimated 160-180 basis points of negative impact from the calendar shift, and expects adjusted diluted earnings per common share for the fourth quarter will be near the lower end of its previously provided guidance of $1.42 and $1.47, excluding any restructuring charges related to the Pat Catan’s store closures.

Michaels Companies operates more than 1,200 Michaels stores in 49 states and Canada.
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