Best Buy established an Internet subsidiary last week, BestBuy.com, which will absorb all of the chain's e-commerce personnel and assets and set web strategies for the chain.
John C. Walden, president of the chain's Electronic Commerce unit, will lead BestBuy.com. Walden, who joined the company in May, is the former president/COO of peapod.com.
Best Buy's e-commerce site has been selling CDs since March 1997 and DVD movies since November 1998. The chain said BestBuy.com plans to "substantially expand its Internet offerings within the next 12 months."
In a prepared statement Dick Schulze, chairman/CEO of Best Buy, said the new subsidiary will "facilitate [BestBuy.com's] expansion, foster the recruitment of experienced Internet talent and provide the flexibility to raise independent capital."
Schulze added, "We see e-commerce as a complement to our retail stores, offering increased shopping options to our brand loyal customers. The Internet allows us to build incremental sales and pursue new business opportunities."