Office Depot Announces Organizational Structure and Key Management Appointments

Office DepotBoca Raton, Florida based office supply retailer Office Depot, today announced the formation of its Executive Committee and Leadership Team. It should be interesting to see how this team will integrate, consolidate and or optimize the Office Depot and Office Max Private Brand portfolios to create a winning portfolio of brands that drives differentiation and profitability.

“Since I joined the Company last month, my priorities have been to name a headquarters location and select a leadership team that incorporates the best talent from both companies and also adds fresh perspective from the outside,” said Roland Smith, Chairman and CEO of Office Depot, Inc. “Last week we named Boca Raton as our corporate headquarters. Today, I am sharing the Company’s new organizational structure, which focuses on accountability and streamlined decision making. I believe this approach provides the best foundation to execute the merger synergies and transformation strategy for long-term growth.”

The following positions make up the Executive Committee and report to Smith:

  • President, North America. This position will be responsible for managing the following functions: Retail, Contract Sales, E-Commerce, Merchandising, Marketing, Real Estate and Supply Chain. The Company will commence an external search for a seasoned executive to fill this role. In the meantime, this position’s direct reports will report directly to Smith.
  • Steve Schmidt is President, International. This position, which ultimately will be based in Europe, manages the Company’s international businesses in Europe, Asia, New Zealand, Australia and Mexico. Schmidt will not be relocating, but will stay on board for up to a year and continue to lead the European transformation, grow our international business and find his successor.
  • Steve Hare is the Executive Vice President & Chief Financial Officer. He is responsible for the oversight of all financial aspects of the Company, including Financial Planning, and Accounting and Control. He also manages Treasury and Investor Relations as well as the Internal Audit and Tax functions. Additionally, he oversees Information Technology and the Integration Office.
  • Michael Allison is the Executive Vice President & Chief People Officer. He has global responsibility for all Human Resources functions, including Compensation and Benefits, Talent Management, Associate Relations, Organizational Development & Training, and Diversity & Inclusion. Additionally, the Communications function reports to him.
  • Elisa Garcia is the Executive Vice President & Chief Legal Officer. She is responsible for managing Legal, Regulatory, Compliance and Government Affairs worldwide as well as the Loss Prevention function. She also serves as general counsel and secretary for the organization.
  • Chief Strategy and Innovation Officer. The Company will begin an immediate search to fill this position, which will drive strategy and lead efforts to develop and prioritize key business initiatives. Investing in this newly created role is an important part of defining the future of the organization and exploring opportunities for top-line growth and innovation.

“In selecting my Executive Committee, I am bringing together top performers and trusted advisors to help shape the strategic decisions that impact our global business,” Smith said. “The team offers a breadth of experience across a range of environments and the ability to create new ideas, drive innovation, generate improvements and execute flawlessly. As we round out this group, I am confident that we have the personalities, talent and skills to transform and build our organization.”

In addition to the Executive Committee, Smith has created a newly formed Leadership Team, which includes members of the EC and executives who report to the President of North America and the Chief Financial Officer. These executives are:

Executive Vice President of Retail. This position is responsible for managing the retail stores organization. It will set strategic direction to grow profitable sales while developing an omni-channel shopping experience aimed at increasing share of wallet. The Company will conduct an outside search to fill this position. Juan Guerrero, currently Senior Vice President of Retail for legacy Office Depot, will act as interim head of Retail during the search process and will be a candidate for this role.
Steve Calkins is the Executive Vice President of Contract Sales. He manages the Company’s North American field sales organization, which services small, medium and large businesses, education and government customers, and Canadian operations. He is responsible for setting strategic direction to grow profitable sales across customer segments and vertical markets, including developing innovative solutions designed to expand the customer relationship.
Executive Vice President of E-Commerce. This position manages all North American websites for our direct-to-consumer and online business customers. It will also set strategic direction to grow profitable sales while developing an omni-channel shopping experience aimed at increasing share of wallet. The Company will conduct an outside search to fill this position. Mike Kirschner, currently Senior Vice President of E-Commerce for legacy Office Depot, will act as interim head of E-Commerce and will be a candidate for this role.
Ron Lalla is Executive Vice President of Merchandising. He is responsible for defining the overall Merchandising category and assortment strategy and strengthening market position and brand recognition through innovative product development and strategic vendor relationships.
Tim Rea is Executive Vice President of Marketing. He is responsible for driving the development and implementation of strategic marketing activities that build brand loyalty and increase market share across North America.
Larry Hartley is Senior Vice President of Supply Chain. He is responsible for delivering best-in-class supply chain support. This includes driving continuous improvement and process standardization across the Company’s distribution network to optimize transportation services and inventory levels, while ensuring timely and affordable fulfillment.
Rob Koch is Senior Vice President of Real Estate. He leads the development of the Company’s real estate strategy. This includes the lease management, construction and architecture of all new, relocating, reformatted or closing stores.
Todd Hale is Senior Vice President & Global Chief Information Officer. He defines the Company’s IT architecture, oversees IT projects and manages portfolio decisions. Hale also is responsible for planning and developing applications supporting business operations and ensuring the security of IT systems and processes.
Deb O’Connor is Senior Vice President of Integration. She will oversee the successful integration of legacy Office Depot and legacy OfficeMax to ensure the achievement of synergies in an effective and efficient manner.

“With the executive team nearing completion, we will now move quickly to select the best talent available from both legacy companies to build a world class organization focused on exceeding the expectations of consumers and businesses, becoming a more appealing partner to our vendors, and ultimately driving value for our shareholders,” Smith said.

“In launching this new structure and through the integration process, a number of very talented and well-respected executives are leaving our Company,” Smith noted. “I would like to thank them all for their leadership during this critical time and wish them well in their future endeavors.”



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Christopher Durham
Christopher Durham is the president of My Private Brand and the co-founder of The Vertex Awards. He is a strategist, author, consultant and retailer who built brands at Delhaize-owned Food Lion, and lead strategy and brand development for Lowe’s Home Improvement. He has consulted with retailers around the world on their private brand portfolios including: Family Dollar, Petco, Staples, Office Depot, Best Buy, Metro (Canada), TLW (Taiwan) and Hola (Taiwan). Durham has published five definitive books on private brands, including his first book, Fifty2: The My Private Brand Project. In 2017, he will debut his newest book, Vanguard: Vintage Originals, a visual tour of innovation and disruption in private brand going back to the mid-1800’s. Dynamic in his presentation while down to earth and frank in his opinions, he has presented at numerous conferences, including FUSE, The Dieline Conference, Packaging that Sells, Omnishopper and PLMA’a annual trade show in Chicago. Durham lives in Charlotte, NC with his wife, Laraine, and two daughters, Olivia and Sarah.