Walmart Inc. has appointed a new president of its e-commerce business and online marketplace Jet.com. Tesco Stores veteran Simon Belsham joins the retailer to oversee Jet.com, taking over the role from Liza Landsman, who became president after Walmart’s 2016 $3.3 billion acquisition. Landsman announced last month she was leaving Jet.com to join venture capital firm New Enterprise Associates.
Belsham comes from a U.K.-based grocery background, spending time at Tesco, No. 5 in the Internet Retailer 2017 Europe 500, and U.K. online grocery retailer Ocado Group Plc, No. 22. He held several positions in his seven years at Tesco, including managing director of performance and development of its online grocery business. He is tasked with helping Jet.com as its scales its efforts in the grocery space with Jet grocery.
“In my view, there is no business better positioned to take advantage of the opportunity ahead than the combination of Walmart and Jet,” Belsham said in a statement. “I believe this creates a unique moment to build something very differentiated and engaging for customers and I’m eager to roll up my sleeves and lead Jet during this exciting and transformative time.”
The appointment comes on the heels of Walmart’s recent announcement that it will soon offer grocery delivery in 100 U.S. cities. Walmart says it will use 800 of its stores to fulfill orders. Additionally, Walmart-owned Sam’s Club recently announced a partnership with Instacart for grocery deliveries, available in Austin, Dallas-Fort Worth and St. Louis with more cities to be added in 2018 and beyond.
“His omnichannel experience and track record of innovation from his time in consumables and durables will help spearhead Jet’s focus to be the leading online retailer for the urban consumer,” Mark Lore, Walmart’s president and CEO, wrote about Belsham in an email. “With Jet grocery being an integral part of the strategy, Simon brings incredible experience in scaling grocery delivery and his unique background in converging technology and retail.”
Walmart, No. 3 in the Internet Retailer 2017 Top 500, says its gross merchandise value—the value of all goods sold on its e-commerce sites—grew 47% year-over-year. That figure includes merchandise sold by other merchants on Walmart.com and Jet.com. Overall, the company’s revenues increased 3.0% year over year, a $14.5 billion rise to $500.3 billion.
Jet.com ranks No. 22 among Internet Retailer’s 2017 Online Marketplaces, which examines the largest online marketplaces in the world. It generated an Internet Retailer-estimated $1.0 billion in gross merchandise volume last year, according to Internet Retailer’s Top500Guide.com.
In other e-commerce personnel news:
- Former CEO of women’s apparel e-retailer ModCloth, Matt Kaness, has left his position, a Walmart spokesperson confirmed to Recode. Former Bonobos chief financial officer Antonio Nieves, who previously held the CFO role at ModCloth, has been appointed as ModCloth’s new CEO. Walmart acquired ModCloth, No. 198 in the Top 500, in March 2017 and later acquired men’s apparel retailer Bonobos, No. 232, in June 2017.
- Home furnishings giant Wayfair Inc., No. 16 in the Top 500, will open a new customer service center in Big Flats, N.Y., scheduled to open this summer, where it will hire more than 450 full-time customer service and sales employees. “Wayfair’s success is built upon a steadfast commitment to the customer and its dedication to delivering an unparalleled customer experience. We are confident that our expansion to New York State will enable us to further build our team with dedicated professionals who believe in always putting the customer first,” said Liz Graham, vice president of sales and service at Wayfair.
- Omnichannel commerce platform Kibo appointed David Post as its CEO. Prior to Kibo, Post served as president for Vista Consulting Group, an investment firm in software, data and technology. He also has worked at technology and software consulting firms Kintana, Accenture and Keane Consulting. “[Kibo] has made incredible strides in this dynamic and competitive industry, becoming the pioneer in unifying commerce technology and empowering our customers to provide seamless, personalized shopping experiences,” said Post. “I look forward to continuing industry leadership in technological innovation to drive growth and adoption of the Kibo platform with leading retailers and brands.”