Apple Retail Chief Angela Ahrendts to Leave the Company
Apple announced Tuesday that retail chief Angela Ahrendts will leave the company in April, reports CNBC. Ahrendts has led Apple's retail and online stores as senior vice president of retail for five years, and is leaving “for new personal and professional pursuits,” according to the company. Apple executive Deirdre O'Brien will fill Ahrendt's role and expand her title to senior vice president of people and retail. Ahrendts was previously CEO of Burberry before joining Apple in 2014.
Total Retail's Take: It's unclear what Ahrendts next move may be, but she's leaving Apple as the reportedly highest paid executive in the company. Deirdre O'Brien brings more than three decades of experience working for Apple to her newly expanded role, which adds managing the global company's 35 online stores and 506 retail stores to her already lengthy list of responsibilities as chief of people. In Apple's announcement, Ahrendts said, "I feel there's no better time to pass the baton to Deirdre, one of Apple’s strongest executives. I look forward to watching how this amazing team, under her leadership, will continue to change the world one person and one community at a time." While it doesn't appear Ahrendts is being pushed out the door, slowing iPhone sales may have contributed to her decision to leave Apple. It will be interesting to see where she lands; a return to the retail fashion space seems likely.
Kristina Stidham is the digital content director at Women in Retail Leadership Circle and sister brand Total Retail. She is passionate about digital media and handles video, podcast and virtual event production for both brands. You can often find her at WIRLC, TR, or industry events with her camera and podcasting equipment recording interviews with retailers.
Kristina holds a B.A. in Media Studies and Production from the Temple University Klein College of Media and Communication in Philadelphia. Go Owls! When she's not in the office, she loves to go on long walks, sing around the house, hangout with her two pet guinea pigs, and travel to new places.