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HBC names Helena Foulkes CEO

 8 February 2018     HGO Staff 

TORONTO – HBC has named Helena Foulkes as its chief executive officer, effective February 19. She joins the Canadian department store chain from CVS Health, where she served as its executive vice and president of CVS Pharmacy.

In a statement, the publicly-held company said Foulkes will be responsible for HBC’s global strategy and operations for all banners while overseeing more than 66,000 associates worldwide across a portfolio of more than 480 stores, related e-commerce platforms, supply chain, logistics and technology. She will also be appointed to HBC’s board of directors.

Richard Baker, who has been acting as the company’s interim CEO, will continue as Governor and executive chairman.

“Helena is a transformational leader who will invigorate the business with a new perspective as we position HBC for the future,” Baker said. “Throughout her 25 year tenure in retail, she has a proven track record of making bold, strategic choices that, at their core, put the customer first and have proven enormously impactful to business success. The board and I are thrilled to have Helena take the helm and bring her invaluable experience to the company.”

Helena Foulkes“HBC has an amazing portfolio of retail banners, valuable real estate and an innovative approach to M&A that give it the ability to win,” Foulkes added. “The future of retail will be defined by companies that think creatively about where the consumer and the world are headed. I look forward to working with this great team and listening deeply to them and to our partners to build upon strategies that capitalise on HBC’s physical and digital assets and deepen our core operating effectiveness. I am honored to join this iconic company.”

Named one of Fortune Magazine’s Most Powerful Women in Business, Foulkes has been lauded as a force for change and innovation.

Prior to joining HBC, she served as executive vice president of the Woonsocket, Rhode Island-based CVS Health and president of CVS Pharmacy for almost four years. HBC said she led the strategic vision as well as the operations for all aspects of its retail business – including nearly 9,700 retail stores, 20 distribution centers and e-commerce sites – as well as merchandising, supply chain, marketing and real estate.

“Over the course of her more than 25 years with CVS, Foulkes played an important leadership role in growing the company to the largest pharmacy health care provider in the United States,” HBC said. “She also helped lead CVS's decision to discontinue sales of tobacco products and the creation of CVS digital, which is now used by 48 million consumers to fill prescriptions.”

Foulkes serves on the boards of The Home Depot and the Harvard University Board of Overseers.

Founded in 1670, HBC is the oldest company in North America. Its banners include Hudson’s Bay, Lord & Taylor, Saks Fifth Avenue, Gilt, Saks OFF 5TH, Galeria Kaufhof, the largest department store group in Germany, and Belgium’s only department store group, Galeria INNO.

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