Troubled apparel giant Gap Inc said on Monday that outgoing CEO Millard Drexler exercised around 14.5 million options to increase his ownership in the company.

The California-based operator of around 4,200 stores said Drexler now has a stake of about 13 million shares compared to 9.5 million shares.

"I exercised these options as part of my ongoing portfolio management and retirement planning," he explained.

"In doing so, I increased my overall holdings in the company and currently remain a major individual shareholder."