HSN Names Ex-Walmart Exec New Merchandising Officer

HSN has brought in some fresh blood, a woman who got her sheepskin in New Jersey, to help on the merchandising front. (Go Seton Hall!)

The company said on Monday that it hired Carmen Bauza as executive vice president and chief merchandising officer. She will join the company Nov. 28 and report directly to HSN President Bill Brand.

“I am extremely pleased to announce the appointment of Carmen Bauza for this critical role,” HSN CEO Mindy Grossman said in a canned statement.

“She is a high-caliber executive who is known as a consumer-centric brand builder and change agent. She will be a strong leader for our experienced merchandising and planning teams, as well as a key member of our executive committee. Carmen’s belief in HSN and our unique approach to retail commerce is a testament to our future growth opportunities.”

“Change agent” is usually corporate code for someone who is going to ax a lot of people.

Bauza has more than 30 years’ experience in retail and merchandising, having served in leadership positions at Walmart, L Brands (formerly Limited Brands, Inc.), Five Below Inc. and Walt Disney Co.

“Ms. Bauza will be responsible for the comprehensive management and continuous development of HSN’s cross-category product portfolio — including the ongoing expansion of proprietary offerings,” according to the press release.

“Additionally, Ms. Bauza will identify strategic opportunities to enhance cross platform experiences and maximize HSN’s vast customer reach through distributed commerce. As retail, technology and consumer behavior continue to evolve, Ms. Bauza willproactively seek innovative ways to engage HSN customers through compelling events and partnerships that complement the company’s experiential retail strategy and extend brand reach through exclusivity and product development capability.”

“HSN has always been a leader in offering innovative, differentiated retail experiences to its consumers, and I am thrilled to join this dynamic brand,”
Bauza said in her first HSN canned statement.

“Today’s consumer is shopping across all channels, looking for convenience and accessibility, but also a reason to buy. That’s the power of the HSN platform — they build customer engagement with a mix of unique content, compelling events and a growing portfolio of proprietary products. I’ve always believed that merchandising is storytelling, and I look forward to strategically growing the business through great experiences and great products.”

Here’s more from the press release:

Bauza spent the past 10 years as a senior leader at Walmart, most recently serving as the senior vice president for their consumables, health and wellness merchandising division, which includes baby consumables, OTC and optical and chemical and paper goods. That division is one of the largest in the company with a multi-billion dollar sales volume.

She also had oversight of innovations and systems in that role. Her previous time at Walmart included serving as vice president and divisional merchandise manager for their beauty and personal care business, and was credited for the transformation for the category at Walmart. Carmen was also on the Board of Directors for Walmart de Mexico.

Prior to joining Walmart, she oversaw seasonal retail for L Brand’s Bath and Body Works division, and was responsible for the launch of the new beauty store concept, C.O. Bigelow.

Before joining L Brands, she was with Five Below Inc. where she led all merchandising initiatives for planning, pricing, distribution and sourcing. During her time at the Walt Disney Company, she served as a senior merchandising executive, creating and expanding business opportunities for the company based on emerging market trends, guest demographics and psychographics and synergy opportunities.

Bauza is a graduate of Seton Hill University, where she received a BS in fashion merchandising and business management.

“Carmen is a well-respected leader in the consumer and retail industry, with an unparalleled passion for customers, brand and product, and I welcome her to the team,” Brand said. “She is a highly collaborative, innovative and solutions-focused team player, and will play a critical role in crafting and driving HSN’s growth strategy.”

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3 Responses to “HSN Names Ex-Walmart Exec New Merchandising Officer”

  1. Amanda Says:

    You are most likely right, Miss Moss, about people getting the axe. Ol’ Mindy wields it pretty often herself.
    I personally think that HSN is a poor shadow of its former self. All the hokey movie themed events, expensive but poorly made merchandise, and hosts who make carnival barkers look sincere have added up to me not ordering from them anymore.
    After 2001, they started slipping in quality. There are still some great vendors, but Andrew Lessman, Nicky Butler, RJ Graziano, Perlier, and a small handful more, cannot carry the burden of the remainder…which is crap.
    So let them bring in the Walmart whiz, let’s see how she axes the good, keeps the bad….and makes it even more ugly.

  2. SUSAN Says:

    The Walmart Wiz, Claire Watts, that QVC hired didn’t help them and resulted in Ms.Watt’s resignation —- so good luck with that approach HSN…..

    I don’t understand it….both QVC & HSN have an advantage over other online retailers—TV to display and demonstrate their mechandise, yet what do they do—-show us mostly the same things we can find in our local stores……nothing unique or different…..so while they may show that Dyson, Shark, or Bisell vacuum customers will see that presentation and just go to their local stores……..If they want to see sales, bring us some variety and something special —then when you dazzle us with that product on air maybe you can make a sale!!!—

    • Carrie Says:

      I have been saying over and over and over, Susan…that they need to go back to how they used to be in many ways.
      Offer items you can’t buy in stores…and at low prices. This would mean giving us the variety you mentioned. And why should we buy a Dyson from HSN, with huge shipping costs, when Target has it at $80 cheaper…and no shipping?!?
      I bought many things in the late ’90s and early 2000s…but nothing in the last 6 or 7 years. Their “designer” clothes are poorly made, and Target and Walmart have better made versions- and more variety- for a fraction of the cost. Their jewelry is just bad….cheaply made, poor quality stones, and inconsistency. Order a Colleen ring…and when you get it, it won’t even resemble the TV example or online photo. Some of the other brands are ok…but the prices are too high.
      They need to change some things for the better, not for the millennial generation.

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