Michael Francis, chief marketing officer since August 2008, was given the task in January of heading Target's first international expansion. Target plans to start opening stores in Canada in 2013 with the goal of eventually having up to 150 stores in that country.
Francis was working in the marketing division of Marshall Field's in 1990 when that department store chain was bought by Target. In 2001, he became an executive vice president for marketing.
Target shares were down 1.2 percent at $48.44 in morning trading on the New York Stock Exchange.
(Reporting by Phil Wahba in New York; editing by John Wallace)