Retail Movers & Shakers

A week does not go by without a significant promotion or appointment within retail companies — including merchants, industry associations as well as solution providers. Retail TouchPoints presents these updates via the Retail Movers & Shakers section, spotlighting the individuals and companies announcing important new executive developments.

Walmart Installs Four Senior Execs At Flipkart

Just one month after finalizing its acquisition of a majority stake in Flipkart, Walmart is putting four of its top executives into key positions at the Indian e-Commerce marketplace, according to the Economic Times. Emily McNeal, head of Walmart mergers and acquisitions, will join the Flipkart Group as SVP and Group CFO, according to an email sent to Flipkart employees by CEO Binny Bansal. Other Walmart executives moving to Flipkart are:

Walmart Promotes Bonobos Co-President To CEO

Micky Onvural has been named CEO of Bonobos. She will replace founder Andy Dunn, who will be taking on broader digital responsibilities at parent company Walmart, which acquired the retailer in June 2017. Onvural joined Bonobos in October 2016 as the retailer’s Chief Marketing Officer and added the Co-President title in July 2017. She has held high-level marketing, developer relationship and business development posts at Trulia, TokBox and eBay, according to her LinkedIn profile.

Albertsons Appoints Former Starbucks Head As President And CEO

Jim Donald, a former President and CEO of Starbucks, was named President and CEO of Albertsons Cos., effective immediately. Current Albertsons CEO Robert Miller will remain with the company as Chairman of the Board. Continuing in the role as President at Albertsons, Donald was most recently COO of the food and drug retailer. He also previously served as CEO at both Haggen and Extended Stay America, as well as holding leadership roles at Walmart, Safeway and Pathmark Stores.

Working Solutions Names New Strategic Technology Officer

Working Solutions, a provider of contact center solutions for the retail industry, has named Ashok Narayanan to the post of Strategic Technology Officer, with the task of optimizing business performance delivered by the company’s on-demand workforce. Narayanan joins the company from Vizient, where he was the Senior Director of software and platform engineering for the health care entity of non-profit hospitals. Prior to that position, he managed engineering efforts at Sabre.

Wakefern Hires New Head Of Marketing

Wakefern Food Corp. has named Erik Keptner SVP of Marketing. He has nearly 20 years’ experience in the supermarket industry and will oversee the Digital Commerce and Analytics, Advertising, Corporate Merchandising, Private Label and Own Brand and Social Media and Digital Advertising divisions.

Microsoft Appoints Salesforce Exec To Retail-CPG Post

Shelley Bransten, formerly SVP for Retail and Consumer Goods Industries at Salesforce, has been named Corporate Vice President of Global Retail and Consumer Goods Industries at another tech powerhouse, Microsoft. “As part of this new role, I’ll be leading the charge to help retailers and brands harness technology that puts great customer experience at the heart of everything they do,” said Bransten in a LinkedIn post. Bransten began at Salesforce in February 2014. Prior to that she had a long career in retail, including marketing positions at Gap Inc., Williams-Sonoma and Smith & Hawken.

At Home Appoints CVS Exec As New CFO

At Home has revealed that CFO Judd Nystrom will leave the company. Jeffrey Knudson, currently Senior VP of Finance and Retail Controller at CVS Health, will be his successor. Knudson will take the role effective Sept. 28, 2018 after a transition period. Nystrom is leaving to “explore other early-stage growth opportunities,” said Lee Bird, Chairman and CEO of At Home in a statement.

Splio Names New Chief Marketing Officer

Omnichannel marketing platform provider Splio has promoted Charles Wells, a 30-year technology and digital marketing veteran, to Chief Marketing Officer. Wells, who joined the company in August 2017, was already helping to lead the Splio rebranding strategy that was undertaken this year, which aims to reposition its place in the market by reworking products and pushing a more up-to-date visual identity. Wells also will focus on designing a global marketing and communication strategy for the company, highlighting Splio’s objective to advance its digital and international marketing efforts.

Sharper Image Promotes COO To Top Spot

Sharper Image has named Lance Reese as CEO. For the past two years Reese has served as the retailer’s COO, responsible for corporate operating units including marketing, merchandising, business development, international sourcing, operations, procurement, technology and customer service. “From an operational perspective, between IT, the warehouse, call center and our inventory teams, Lance has upgraded our processes, systems and efficiencies, which has translated into a better experience for our customers and improved profitability,” said David Katzman, Managing Partner of Camelot Venture Group, which owns and operates the retailer.

Big Lots Hires Tailored Brands Exec As New CEO

Bruce Thorn, most recently President and COO of Tailored Brands, has been named CEO of Big Lots. Following a transition period with Tailored Brands, Thorn is expected to be formally appointed to the new position at the end of September, when he also will be appointed as a director. Thorn succeeds David Campisi, who retired from the company back in April 2018. Thorn joined Tailored Brands in 2015 as EVP and COO. Before that, he held various enterprise-level roles with PetSmart since 2007, most recently as EVP, Store Operations, Services and Supply Chain. Thorn also has held several leadership positions with Gap, Cintas Corp, and LESCO.

L Brands Boosts Q2 Net Sales 8.3%; PINK CEO Retires

L Brands, the parent company of Victoria’s Secret, PINK, Bath & Body Works, La Senza and Henri Bendel, achieved net sales of $2.984 billion in Q2, an 8.3% increase over the $2.755 billion reported for the same period the previous year, and comparable store sales increased 3%. The company also announced that Denise Landman, CEO of PINK, will retire at the end of 2018. While net sales and comp sales increased, other financial indicators were down for the quarter, which ended August 4, 2018. Earnings per share dropped to $0.36 from $0.48 for the same period in 2017; operating income fell to $228.1 million from $300.9 million; and net income dipped to $99.0 million from $138.9 million.

Clobotics Names Ex-Walmart CIO To Advisory Board

Clobotics, a computer vision solution provider for the retail and wind power industries, has named Kevin Turner to its Board of Advisors. Turner has extensive experience in both technology and retail: he served as CIO of Walmart from 2000 to 2002, President and CEO of Sam’s Club from 2002 to 2005 and was COO of Microsoft from 2005 to 2016. Turner is currently Vice Chairman and Senior Advisor to the CEO for Albertsons Companies and serves on the Board of Directors for Nordstrom.

RetailMeNot Names Amazon Exec As New CTO

Vivek Sagi, most recently head of product and engineering for Amazon Business Procurement Solutions, has been named Chief Technology Officer at RetailMeNot. Sagi joined Amazon in 2013 as CTO of, where he led the software engineering, business analytics and product teams. He later moved to Austin, Texas to start Amazon Business Procurement Solutions, where he led global product and engineering for e-Commerce giant’s B2B marketplace. Prior to Amazon, Sagi held executive positions at companies including Vungle, NewBrandAnalytics and ServiceLive. Early in his career, he was a consultant for Deloitte.
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