Apple's retail chief leaves to be CEO of J.C. Penney

Summary:J.C. Penney named Ron Johnson as CEO. Johnson launched Apple's retail strategy and was the man behind the company's aggressive store expansion a decade ago.

J.C. Penney named Ron Johnson as CEO. Johnson launched Apple's retail strategy and was the man behind the company's aggressive store expansion a decade ago.

Johnson will become CEO on Nov. 1 and report to Myron E. Ullman, current chairman

and CEO at the retailer.

Apple's retail strategy looked crazy a decade ago, but has been used to create a juggernaut that is about marketing as much as actual retailing. Apple's retail stores showcase products such as the Mac, iPhone, iPad and iPod.

For Johnson, who joined Apple from Target, running a large retailer has been a goal. Johnson said:

"I've always dreamed of leading a major retail company as CEO, and I am thrilled to have the opportunity to help J. C. Penney re-imagine what I believe to be the single greatest opportunity in American retailing today, the Department Store."

With Johnson in the fold, it should be interesting to see how J.C. Penney layouts develop.

Meanwhile, Johnson is taking some of its Apple wealth and investing in his new employer. He is buying $50 million in J.C. Penney warrants on 7.257 million shares. These shares can't be hedged or sold for the first six years of a 7.5 year term.

With Johnson's track record at Apple, his tenure at J.C. Penney will be worth watching. Here's Johnson's Apple record by the numbers:

For the six months ended March 26, Apple’s retail operating profit was $1.84 billion on revenue of $7.04 billion. Compared to the same time frame a year earlier sales almost doubled. Operating profit did double.

  • In fiscal 2010 closing at end of September, Apple’s retail outlets delivered an operating profit of $2.36 billion on $9.8 billion in revenue.
  • In 2009, Apple’s retail stores had an operating profit of $1.67 billion on revenue of $6.65 billion.
  • In 2008 saw an operating profit of $1.66 billion on revenue of $7.3 billion.
  • In 2007, Apple’s retail operating profit was $857 million on revenue of $4.1 billion.
  • In 2006, Apple’s retail operating profit was $600 million on revenue of $3.25 billion.
  • In 2005, Apple’s retail unit had an operating profit of $151 million on revenue of $2.35 billion.
  • In 2004, Apple’s retail stores delivered an operating profit of $39 million on revenue of $1.18 billion.
  • In 2003, Apple had a retail operating loss of $5 million on revenue of $621 million.
  • In 2002, Apple’s had retail operating losses of $22 million on revenue of $710 million.

Topics: CXO, Apple

About

Larry Dignan is Editor in Chief of ZDNet and SmartPlanet as well as Editorial Director of ZDNet's sister site TechRepublic. He was most recently Executive Editor of News and Blogs at ZDNet. Prior to that he was executive news editor at eWeek and news editor at Baseline. He also served as the East Coast news editor and finance editor at CN... Full Bio

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