Big Lots hires former Walmart exec as chief merchant

by Talk Business & Politics staff ([email protected]) 320 views 

Jack Pestello, a former Walmart executive, is the new chief merchant at Ohio-based Big Lots, replacing Lisa Bachmann, who plans to retire following a brief transition period.

He spent seven years at Walmart where he served as general merchandise manager for the retail giant’s grocery business. He spent five years as a senior vice president of private brands at Walmart where he ran the Walmart’s culinary center in Bentonville.

He also was vice president of Walmart’s international division where he led the global consolidation of supplier partnerships. Before Pestello joined Walmart, he served as chief merchandising officer at Woolworths Australia.

“Jack is a true value retail merchant, with a proven track record in strategic sourcing and implementing merchandising strategies to drive traffic,” said Bruce Thorn, president and CEO, Big Lots. “We look forward to benefiting from his industry expertise and insights as we continue to execute on our strategic initiatives to generate long-term, sustainable growth.”

Big Lots also reported that it has continued to experience strong demand and now expects comparable sales in the second quarter of fiscal 2020 to be at the high end of its previously communicated guidance of a mid-to-high twenties percentage increase.

Big Lots operates 1,404 stores in 47 states.

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