Boxed is facing an executive-level shakeup with the departure of Naeem Ishaq, CFO of the online wholesaler, according to Fast Company. He is the third executive to part ways with the retailer in recent months, following Behzad Soltani, VP of B2B in February 2018, and CMO Heather Mayo in September 2017.
The latest exit takes place one week after Boxed reportedly rejected a $400 million takeover bid from Kroger, according to Bloomberg. The retailer had also held preliminary talks with Amazon, Target and Costco, but those retailers didn’t submit a bid. At the NRF Big Show in January, Boxed CEO Chieh Huang revealed that his dream was to stay independent and take the company public.
Boxed carries a limited selection of bulk-sized essentials and grocery products, which allows the fulfillment of more orders using fewer people and less space than competitors. The retailer has been dubbed the “Costco of Millennials” due to its young, tech-savvy consumer base, but its performance with enterprise customers also has been impressive. Office purchases of bulk goods represent 50% of all new business for Boxed and 25% of overall sales.
The online retailer is in the right market for expansion, as the online grocery market’s compound annual growth rate has increased 18% over the last five years, according to Forrester Research. Boxed is staying at the cutting edge of e-Commerce by debuting three new customer-facing technologies in early 2018: Augmented Reality (AR) View to let customers see and compare products; a Facebook Messenger chatbot capable of handling customer service questions; and a group ordering option for customers to share links and split the bill through Venmo.