Retailing, Franchising, and Consumerism Business Intelligence in China

Best Buy China Chairman Resigns

American electronics retailer Best Buy announced that because of personal reasons, Lv Weimin, senior vice-president of Best Buy Group, and chairman and general manager of Best Buy China, has resigned his post.

In a press statement, Best Buy says the company respects and accepts Lv's decision and thanks him for his contribution to the company. Zeng Yaozu, director of marketing department of Best Buy, says that Lv Weimin's departure will not affect the company's development strategy in China.

The development of Best Buy has not proceeded smoothly. Since its entry into China in December 2006, Best Buy has opened only one flagship store. On April 20, 2007, Lv Weimin was removed from his position as general manager of Best Buy China, and then Yang Deming, former senior vice-president of Ports, was appointed the position of president and COO of Asia.

Best Buy has much entrenched competition in China from brands like Gome, Suning, and Dazhong.

At the same time, Best Buy's offices in the United States said that Neville Roberts will join the company in a new position as chief information officer of Best Buy International, the strategic business unit focused on the enterprise's growth outside of the United States. In his new role, Roberts will report to Robert Willett, chief executive officer of Best Buy International and the enterprise's chief information officer.

"As the leader of Best Buy International's information technology team, Neville will focus on the services, tools and people essential to the success of our international growth plans and our technology agenda," said Willett. "I am confident that Neville's proven ability with blue chip companies throughout Europe and Asia to interrelate their systems support and overall strategies will be of great value to us. Best Buy will benefit from his business acumen, strategic approach and deep technical skills as we continue our growth in Canada and China, further our partnership with The Carphone Warehouse in Europe, and embark on our expansion into Mexico and Turkey."

Roberts will lead Best Buy's international information systems team to create "Best Buy-in-a-box," a suite of off-the-shelf IT packages and custom-built applications bound together by integration services, that can provide standardized systems and processes as Best Buy moves into new global markets. One of his primary initial focuses will be to create an ecommerce platform as part of the multi-channel strategy to support the company's international growth.

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