By Lisa Johnston
New products on display at the American International Toy Fair, held in N
Fort Worth, Texas — RadioShack has appointed two key executive VPs to oversee marketing and store concepts as it seeks to transform its business.
The latter, Michael DeFazio, already on the job for several weeks, has begun developing new store prototypes that are expected to debut over the next several months.
DeFazio worked with RadioShack CEO Joseph Magnacca at Walgreens and Duane Reed, where he directed store concepts and operations. In his new post, he is charged with conceptualizing, designing, developing and implementing “a new shopping experience for RadioShack consumers,” the company said.
His marketing counterpart, chief marketing officer Jennifer Warren, is a veteran digital ad agency executive with a background in brand building. In her new role she will handle all aspects of RadioShack’s marketing, including brand strategy, advertising, corporate communications, social media and online customer experience.
She replaces Lee Applbaum, who left the company just over a year ago.
The hires are the first major appointments by Magnacca, a former drugstore marketing and merchandising exec who joined RadioShack in February. They join a newly formed dream team that includes store operations chief Troy Risch, formerly of Target, and Sam’s Club veteran Huey Long, who handed off marketing to Warren but still heads business development and omnichannel strategy.
In a statement, Magnacca noted, “Jennifer and Mike are becoming members of the talented, world-class executive team we are building at RadioShack, all of whom have a focus on — and proven records of — transforming brands.”
He described RadioShack as being at “an exciting and critical time” in its history “as we set the stage for our stores’ and the brand’s evolution and growth.”
Indeed, with losses mounting and margins in its core mobile business thinning, many consider this a do-or-die moment for the 92-year-old retailer with the anachronistic name, which some still perceive solely as a destination for batteries and electronics parts.
Magnacca expressed confidence in DeFazio’s ability “to deliver an exciting, compelling and fun shopping experience to the store,” and in Warren’s knack for “transforming brands from the inside out by aligning with its purpose to create a compelling, meaningful and fun experience for consumers.
“This fits exactly with what our near-term plans are for RadioShack,” he said.
The company reports its first-quarter results on Tuesday, when Magnacca is also expected to outline a new strategic blueprint for the business.
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