Author: Marianne Wilson
Source: CSA The Business of Retail
An incoming chief executive is poised to make history at Best Buy.
The consumer electronics giant on Monday named Corie Barry, currently the company’s chief finance and strategic transformation officer, as CEO, effective June 11, making her the first woman ever to serve in the role at Best Buy. Hubert Joly, Best Buy’s current CEO and board chairman, will transition to the newly created position of executive chairman of the board and will advise Barry on strategy, mergers and acquisitions, external relationships and other matters.
The retailer described the changes as part of its board’s “ongoing succession planning process” meant “to provide leadership continuity.” Barry will also join the board of directors, which will now expand to 13 directors
Best Buy’s incoming CEO has big shoes to fill. Joly has had a remarkable run at Best Buy, transforming it from a lumbering, old-fashioned big-box retailer into a worthy competitor for a digital age. When he joined the chain as CEO in 2012, Best Buy had reported same-store sales declines in seven of its preceding eight quarters. Joly added an array of new services, including home tech installation support, that helped drive customer traffic and satisfaction, and teamed up with a variety of brands, from Samsung to Amazon, on the opening of in-store shops. He also invested heavily in Best Buy’s e-commerce operations. Under Joly’s watch, Best Buy has posted same-store sales growth for the past eight quarters
In 2017, Joly introduced “Best Buy 2020: Building the New Blue,” a growth strategy focused on enriching lives through technology. In its most recent fiscal year, the retailer essentially delivered on its fiscal 2021 revenue and non-GAAP operating income targets two years ahead of schedule and returned $2 billion to shareholders through dividends and share repurchases.
“I am so proud of the strategic, financial and cultural transformation we have achieved, and with Best Buy well positioned for continued growth well into the future, now is the right time to begin a leadership transition,” Joly said. “We have a tremendously talented, deep and dedicated leadership team at Best Buy, driven by our strategy and purpose to enrich lives with technology, build lasting relationships with customers and make positive impacts on society. Corie has played a critical role in developing and executing the proven growth strategy in place today, and I am confident she has the vision, skills, experience and leadership capabilities necessary to be our CEO.”
Barry joined Best Buy in 1999 and has held a variety of financial and operational roles within the organization, both in the field and at the corporate campus. She became CFO in 2016 and, prior to that, served as the company’s chief strategic growth officer. Barry has also served as senior VP of domestic finance and as the interim leader of Best Buy’s services organization.
“I am deeply honored to have been selected as Best Buy’s next CEO and look forward to working closely with Hubert, our board, and the exceptional Best Buy family to continue the momentum we have been able to achieve,” Barry said. “Today’s technology and consumer landscape creates tremendous opportunities for Best Buy to further expand and deepen relationships with our customers and employees, while continuing to deliver shareholder value.”
Best Buy noted that Joly is also expected to assume certain responsibilities at the request of the CEO, in areas like government affairs, community relations and leadership development.
As part of the transition, the company will conduct a search for a new CFO. It also announced an additional change to its leadership team, also effective on June 11. Mike Mohan, current U.S. COO, will be promoted to president and COO, The company will conduct an internal and external search for a new CFO.