BENTONVILLE, Ark. — Walmart has named a new chief marketing officer to take the place of the outgoing Stephen Quinn.
As of this month, Tony Rogers will return to the company’s Bentonville headquarters from China, where he has served as Walmart’s chief marketing officer for the past two years managing traditional, digital and social media for the company.
In total, Rogers has been with Walmart for 10 years, including eight years in marketing for Walmart U.S. in which he served in various roles, such as senior vice president of marketing and vice president of advertising. Before joining Walmart, Rogers held several marketing roles at PepsiCo Inc.’s Frito-Lay division.
In his new chief marketing role for the U.S. division, Rogers will report to Walmart U.S. chief executive officer Greg Foran. According to the company, Rogers will also be working with former Target marketing chief Michael Francis, whom Walmart has brought on as a consultant to assist in the department’s transition.
Francis, who spent three decades at Target, is largely credited for the retailer’s “chic” image. During his tenure at Target, Francis forged partnerships with such designers as Michael Graves. Most recently, Francis has been serving as chief global branding officer for DreamWorks Animation SKG.
Bringing on Francis fits into Walmart’s strategy of trying to attract more higher-end shoppers, which the company has stressed is an important goal. During a meeting of investors in October, Doug McMillon, Walmart’s chief executive officer, remarked, “Globally we know growth will disproportionately come from middle- and upper-income households in the years ahead.”
Some of the key areas Rogers will be responsible for as the head of the marketing department, according to Walmart spokeswoman Deisha Barnett, are customer research, strategy, program development, branding and customer communication.
Walmart said Rogers has led the company’s efforts to devote more of its resources to reaching out to a broader, more multicultural base.
Highlighting the importance of that outreach, Rogers said in 2012 that Walmart had to make multicultural marketing part of “everything” the company does. Rogers has also alluded to past mistakes that Walmart has made in not putting a stronger effort into reaching Hispanics.
Quinn will be officially stepping down from the company at the end of this month — along with the company’s chief financial officer, Charles Holley.
Walmart confirmed Quinn’s retirement in December after months of speculation as to his future with the company. Quinn’s retirement, according to the company, is part of Walmart’s revamping of its U.S. marketing organization.
Quinn first joined Walmart in 2005 from PepsiCo’s Frito-Lay, where he was also chief marketing officer for the company’s North American division. He is known for helping to create Walmart’s slogan “Save money. Live better.”
He was promoted to the top marketing position at Walmart in 2007. Quinn also worked for a number of Walmart suppliers, including Proctor & Gamble Co. and Johnson & Johnson in finance and marketing roles before joining Walmart.