TORONTO — Between placating activist investors and developing new ways to grow a veteran business in an increasingly unforgiving sector, new Hudson’s Bay Co. chief executive Helena Foulkes has her work cut out for her.
Foulkes, a former executive with U.S. drugstore giant CVS, will fill the void left at HBC after the abrupt departure last fall of veteran retail executive Jerry Storch, who made a return to his consulting firm after close to three years at the department store retailer’s helm. According to reports, Storch’s vision for the retailer clashed with that of governor and company chairman Richard Baker, who assumed the CEO role on an interim basis after the former CEO’s departure in November.
“HBC has an amazing portfolio of retail banners, valuable real estate and an innovative approach to M&A that give it the ability to win,” Foulkes said in a statement on Monday. “The future of retail will be defined by companies that think creatively about where the consumer and the world are headed.”