Walmart has hired former Amazon executor Suresh Kumar for a recent elevated role as chief technology and chief development officer, as the big box retailer aims to compete more with Amazon, Google and other tech giants.
Walmart announced in a blog post and in a note sent by CEO Doug McMillon to employees Tuesday that Kumar is in the company on July 8 and will report directly to him.
Kumar was last with Google, where he was vice president and general manager of screen, video, app ads and analytics. Previously, he was executive vice president for Microsoft's cloud infrastructure and operations. Prior to Microsoft, he spent 15 years in Amazon in multiple roles, including Vice-President of Retail Systems and Operations Technology and head of the Amazon Supply Chain and Warehouse Management System.
"Walmart is one of the great success stories in how a company evolves over time to serve the customer's changing needs, and today it is in the midst of a very exciting digital transformation," Kumar said in a statement. "With more than 1[ads1]1,000 stores … the potential for technology to help people scale is unsurpassed, and I'm excited to be part of this."
The announcement comes after Walmart recently lost his CTO Jeremy King to Pinterest. 19659002] Although Kumar will assume all the King's former responsibilities, like going up Walmart Labs, he does not fill King's void exactly. King reported to Walmart's e-commerce manager, Marc Lore, while Kumar is now directly at McMillons management team. Kumar will also monitor technology at Sam & # 39; s Club and internationally.
Walmart is still looking to fill King's role, said a spokeswoman, while Fiona Tan, senior vice president of customer technology, has entered into an "elevated role" to cover some of his duties.
King was known to play an important role in helping Walmart bill himself as more of a tech company, which the dealer has tried to do. He was behind initiatives, including Walmart's addition of virtual reality headsets and machine-learning robots in the stores. He also helped Lore grow online sales, which increased 37% over the last quarter.
Here is the email Doug McMillon sent co-worker about Kumar's rent:
Re: Suresh Kumar appointed Global Chief Technology Officer and Chief Development Officer
The technology today and in Tomorrow allows us to serve customers and colleagues in ways that were not possible before. We have started a significant digital transformation in our business, but we have a long way to go. We want to pick up the pace and increase the size of the change, so we create a new role, reporting directly to me, the Chief Technology Officer (CTO) and the Chief Development Officer (CDO), and I'm excited to announce We've found a uniquely qualified leader of this position in Suresh Kumar.
Suresh has 25 years of experience in technology leadership coming from Google and has previously worked at Microsoft, Amazon and IBM. He has a unique understanding of the intersection of technology and retail, including the supply chain, and has deep experience in cloud, advertising and machine learning. And he has an overview of working in partnership with business teams to run results. He is not only a strong technician, but also a strong business person.
As the Global CTO, Suresh will set our technical strategy, combining advances in computing with Walmart's strengths to deliver the best customer experience. As Global CDO, he will lead the team in building tools and systems to digitize our business using the scale and power of our data to deliver a competitive edge while improving the productivity of our employees and their experience of being part of Walmart.
Our Chief Technology Officers (USA, Sam and International) will report to Suresh and their respective business leaders to ensure that our technology technologies continue to meet the needs of our customers and employees. Clay Johnson and the Global Business Services team will also report to Suresh. I would like to take this opportunity to thank the technology team for the progress they have made and for their ability to make things happen in a period of change in our industry and business.
Suresh was last with Google, acting as Vice President and General Manager of Screen, Video, App Ads and Analytics. Prior to Google, he was Corporate Vice President of Microsoft's Cloud Infrastructure and Operations. Suresh spent 15 years at Amazon in various leadership roles, including Vice President of Technology for Retail Systems and Operations, and led Amazon's supply chain and inventory management provider. Before Amazon.com, Suresh was an investigator at IBM T J Watson Research Center.
Suresh holds a PhD in technology from Princeton University and a bachelor's degree in technology from the Indian Institute of Technology, Madras. He and his wife Gayathri currently live in Cupertino, CA and have two daughters. He will be based in our Sunnyvale office, officially started July 8.
Please join me with Suresh!