Macy’s Inc. has hired Naveen Krishna as chief technology officer, responsible for driving the technology strategy including all store, e-commerce and internal-facing technologies.
Krishna will oversee the teams that build the end-to-end e-commerce experience, enterprise-shared services, infrastructure, field services and functional IT support, Macy’s said.
He will report to Hal Lawton, president of Macy’s, and be based in John’s Creek, Ga., one of the Macy’s technology hubs. He will also spend time at Macy’s technology offices in San Francisco, and Lorain, Ohio. Krishna succeeds Yasir Anwar.
“We are investing in technology to improve digital and mobile experiences, site stability, store technology and fulfillment and logistics improvements,” Lawton said Wednesday. “Naveen’s track record in omnichannel retail makes him the perfect fit to lead the Macy’s technology organization at this critical time.”
One of those technology investments surfaced on Tuesday when Macy’s announced that it had purchased a minority stake in B8ta and it will be leveraging B8ta’s software platform to scale up the Market @ Macy’s. B8ta helps new brands, including those selling online only, build out physical spaces for retailing. Macy’s last year put up a B8ta store at its Herald Square flagship in Manhattan, an 800-square-foot space with an array of trendy, innovative tech products from different brands.
The Market @ Macy’s launched in February this year and is operating at 10 Macy’s locations. The format showcases a rotating selection of apparel, accessories, beauty, entertainment, experiences, decorative home, stationery, technology and gifts, including emerging and established brands. The idea is to reach new audiences, provide new experiences and categories in the store and generate greater traffic.
“Macy’s is in the experience business. We’re always looking for new formats that allow our customers to discover and connect with our products and services in-store in a way that drives engagement with our brand,” said Lawton. “We’re pleased to deepen our partnership with B8ta that will provide the technology engine for the Market @ Macy’s. This will allow us to scale the Market @ Macy’s concept faster, furthering our goal of bringing more excitement and fresh experiences into our stores.”
“With B8ta’s software platform and business model, product makers can go from solely selling online to launching their products with Macy’s in a few clicks. Our platform makes it easy for makers to deploy, manage, analyze, and scale amazing off-line retail experiences,” said Vibhu Norby, the chief executive officer of B8ta.
“At B8ta, we believe physical retail will thrive as a platform for discovering new products and brands. Macy’s was the best partner for B8ta to scale our pioneering retail-as-a-service model to a breadth of categories like apparel, beauty, home and more.”
Norby said B8ta will customize its technology platform for Macy’s, providing brands “a seamless and more automated experience when signing up to participate in the Market @ Macy’s.”
Over the next year, the Market @ Macy’s will test new size format spaces powered by b8ta’s technology and will expand the size of some of the existing pilot locations.
Krishna has more than 20 years of technology experience, primarily in omnichannel retail and consumer products. Most recently, he was vice president of technology for The Home Depot. Earlier, he was a director at Target with overall accountability for Target.com technology and operations. He also spent 13 years in leadership roles at FedEx Kinko’s and Deloitte Consulting.