Lance Armstrong

When Lee Applbaum joined RadioShack in September 2008, he had his work cut out for him. Circuit City had filed for bankruptcy, and retailers across the country found themselves enduring the worst holiday season on record. A year and a half later, Mr. Applbaum, 39, an alumnus of Schottenstein Stores, Coca-Cola and David's Bridal, is presiding over what may well be the beginning of a massive turnaround for the staid brand that many consumers had long ago abandoned. The retailer, with the quaint word "radio" still a part of its name, had been viewed as a purveyor of parts, batteries and off brands. Today, it is doing its best to leave those trappings behind. It boasts a new creative platform and nickname in "The Shack," distribution deals with T-Mobile and iPhone, and a sponsorship of Lance Armstrong, who now competes for the newly formed Team RadioShack.

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