Risky or not, it is 10 years too late. Mall retail is dead as a doornail post COVID-19/Amazon. The next wave is homeowners purchasing 80 percent of goods via mail delivery, and the malls are soon to complete their collapse simultaneously with the small retailer's demise in all but a very few categories. As for hiring a successful seventh CEO -- not going to happen, the board only looks to the inner circle, all of which are ill-equipped to understand modern consumers or retail directions. As no outsiders have been/will be permitted to penetrate the "gentleman's club" there is zero possibility of a turnaround. It is certainly not going to come from people with long-term "experience" -- they have been out of touch with retail for over 20 years (with the exception of Walmart).
I worked 27 retail store jobs over 10 years in several different markets, graduated in the top 5% of my class, double majoring in Operations and Marketing. Predicted the triple revenues Walmart would generate 10 years in advance and predicted the total collapse of JCP the day the CEO from 10 years ago announced his, "We will become like Macy's plan" at which time I also applied to be CEO. Never heard a word. So I then started a small business retail development business successfully transferring between $62m and $84m in sales revenues to small business owners directly taken from sales that used to go to big-box stores.
Is anyone ever surprised that the cronyistic hiring these retailers engage in would result in performance levels anyone with a high school degree would achieve? The boards of directors don't have a day of university training and are in charge of retail to consumers? Laughable. Good bye to JCP as predicted, good bye to the mall owners that bought them -- they are next, and you can be sure I am not wrong on that front either.