By Dhanya Skariachan
NEW YORK Feb 7 U.S. electronics retailer
RadioShack Corp named Walgreen executive Joseph Magnacca
as its new chief executive, hoping to boost sales by tapping his
merchandising and marketing experience.
Magnacca, who will begin his job Feb 11, faces the tough
task of transforming the electronics change into a specialist in
selling mobile devices.
Despite its ubiquitous presence in the United States,
RadioShack has not done enough to rebrand itself as a
destination for mobile phones or to cater to younger customers,
many on Wall Street have said.
The selection of Magnacca comes months after the retailer
lost key executives including its merchandising chief and chief
executive, and days before it was due to report results for the
quarter covering the holiday season.
The retailer also faces aggressive competition from the
likes of Best Buy Co Inc, Amazon.com Inc and
stores operated by mobile phone companies.
RadioShack has been trying to focus more on selling more
calling plans and smartphones, particularly Apple Inc's
iPhone, but its profits have suffered because it makes less
money on iPhones than on mobile devices that use the Android
While Magnacca brings a strong merchandising background to
RadioShack, his experience appears to be "largely outside" the
retailer's core competencies, "something that could be
problematic as RadioShack's transformation continues," Barclays
analyst Alan Rifkin said.
Rifkin said he would continue to view RadioShack's shares
cautiously until the company gave a detailed outline of its plan
to address the challenges in its smartphone business.
Magnacca, 50, is currently executive vice president and
president of daily living products and solutions for Walgreen Co
, where he oversees the drugstore chain's marketing and
He was president of New York City drugstore chain Duane
Reade at the time of its acquisition by Walgreen in 2010, and
has been in charge of integrating the smaller chain into the
drugstore chain, the largest in the United States. He also was
chief merchandising officer at Duane Reade.