News Brief

Sears Hires Customer Focus Guru From Best Buy

Struggling with declining sales at both its Sears and K mart chains, Sears Holdings said it hired John C. Walden as executive vice president, chief customer officer.

The company said that Walden, who will oversee services, marketing and the direct commerce businesses, is charged with driving customer-focused strategies and new business development.

Earlier this week, the company said Joan Chow, Sears' chief marketing officer, had left the company. Maureen McGuire, executive vice president and chief marketing officer for Sears Holdings, has assumed those responsibilities while a search is conducted. Once hired, Chow's replacement will report to McGuire, who will report to Walden. Bill Stewart continues as the senior vice president-chief marketing officer for Kmart.

Prior to joining Sears, Walden spent eight years at Best Buy, most recently as executive vice president of Best Buy's Customer Business Group.

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