Robert Thompson, a former Maytag VP was named managing director of MARTA Cooperative of America by John Rice, MARTA's chairman.
Thompson spent 32 years with Maytag, working his way up from a field market manager to customer development VP, according to Rice. “We are excited to have found an individual with the exceptional talents of Bob Thompson,” Rice said. “Bob brings a great deal of experience, integrity and industry respect as he navigates his way to taking MARTA to new heights for our member/owners.”
Thompson's responsibilities at Maytag included Lowe's, Best Buy, Retail Buying Groups, Telesales and the Crosley brand. In his role at MARTA, he will be responsible for providing leadership as well as implementing strategic and operational direction for the Scottsdale-based buying cooperative.
According to Thompson, “MARTA is one of the pioneer national buying groups, whose membership is dedicated to dominate the markets they serve. The demographics of the membership provide a manageable number of members that can align behind a great merchandising proposition to make an impressive impact launching new products and programs within the industry.”
Thompson replaces Bill Bursley who left the group in August to join the rival Nationwide Marketing Group as a field director.
Bursley had served as managing director of MARTA since February, when he was promoted from general manager to succeed Dave Workman, who left the group after one month as president/CEO. Workman in turn succeeded Warren Mann, who left last December after six years as MARTA's executive director. Workman came on board when MARTA entered into a strategic alliance with the Brand Source buying group in January.