Office Depot Appoints New CFO Amid B2B Shift

Office Depot has appointed Joseph Lower as EVP and CFO, effective Jan. 8, 2018. As CFO, Lower will report directly to CEO Gerry Smith and be a member of the Executive Committee.

Lower will be responsible for overseeing all financial aspects of the company, including financial planning and analysis, accounting and financial reporting, as well as managing the tax, internal audit, treasury and investor relations functions.


To close 2017, Office Depot pivoted towards B2B services for enterprises and SMBs. The retailer acquired IT services provider CompuCom for $1 billion and launched a marketing services offering with BizBox. Since experiencing significant financial headwinds following its failed merger with Staples, the office supplies retailer needed a change that could help the brand differentiate from an otherwise commoditized product selection. With that in mind, the appointment of a new CFO from outside the industry comes at an appropriate time.

Lower most recently served as VP and CFO at B/E Aerospace, Inc., where he oversaw all the financial reporting for the company. Prior to joining B/E Aerospace, Inc. in 2014, Lower was VP of Business Development and Strategy for The Boeing Company, where he spent 12 years.

Lower succeeds current EVP and CFO Stephen E. Hare, who is retiring after four years in the role. Hare will assist in the transition of duties.

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