Retail Veterans Drive Lenovo’s Consumer Push
When Lenovo decided to push deeper into the consumer retail market in 2007, some pundits wondered how the corporate PC giant would master the retail computer industry. Hmmm. The VAR Guy has accidentally discovered a few answers to that question.
Sure, Lenovo already has deep experience selling PCs to China’s consumers. But the North American market required North American retail talent. And Lenovo has quietly found and recruited that talent.
A few prime examples:
- Director of Worldwide Consumer Marketing and Strategy Ninis Samuel previously was group marketing manager for Microsoft, including stints that involved marketing Windows to consumers.
- Director of North American Sales Joseph Kryszak joined Lenovo in August 2008 after driving Hewlett-Packard’s Pacific Area relationships with Office Depot, Staples, Best Buy, Circuit City and Fry’s.
- Director of Consumer Planning Angela Richter joined Lenovo in August 2008, after seven years at Office Depot.
- Consumer Products Marketing Manager Charles Farmer joined Lenovo in April 2009, after nearly 17 years as a buyer at Circuit City.
The VAR Guy stumbled onto those personalities — and others — during a recent briefing with Lenovo. Our resident blogger’s interview featured Lenovo’s Charles Farmer, the Circuit City veteran. Within minutes of the discussion, The VAR Guy was surfing LinkedIn to discover who else Lenovo had hired from the retail world. It’s a pretty lengthy list of folks at this point.
An Outsider Moves In
Hmmm. What type of retail expertise can Lenovo harvest from newcomers like Farmer?
Put it this way: Farmer has sat on the retail side of the table for nearly two decades, listening to how PC vendors pitch their products to big retail chains like Circuit City. From his seat in the retail world, Farmer engaged in healthy debate with PC suppliers.
Now, Farmer sits on the other side of the table — and hopes to use his Circuit City experience to drive Lenovo deeper into the retail market. The VAR Guy would love to share some more information, but he’s under a gag order. He’ll let you know when it expires.