Electronics retailer Tweeter Home Entertainment named George Granoff CEO, replacing Joe McGuire. Granoff’s specialty retail experience includes roles as COO of Party City, CEO of The Art Store Inc., a Milford, MA, art supply specialty retailer, and founder and CEO of Sherborn Optical.
He also has roots in large retailing, serving as president and COO of Ames Department Stores and in the same capacity at Bradlees, a division of Stop & Shop, where he rose from assistant buyer to president during a 20-year career.
Granoff’s appointment capped a week that saw half of Tweeter’s 160-member headquarters staff laid off as parent company Schultze Asset Management LLC moved to trim overhead. “This action should allow our remaining stores significantly more breathing room so we can afford to re-stock them with the critical inventory” Tweeter customers demand, says George Schultze, chairman of the hedge fund asset management company that specializes in bankrupt company turnarounds.
Schultze Asset Management bought Tweeter in July for $38 million in cash and the assumption of significant liabilities, including $8 million in additional costs and a credit line of $10 million. Tweeter is No. 242 in the Internet Retailer Top 500 Guide.
Schultze calls Granoff a “seasoned retail turnaround executive.” He also notes that Granoff has an “established record of focusing organizations on their core strengths.”
Granoff says the new Tweeter will combine its store staff expertise and product line to create and install customer entertainment systems. The goal is to “do so profitably in a more nimble, more entrepreneurial organization. That work is well under way, and I intend to see it through to the end,” he says.
Tweeter sells online at Tweeter.com and in a network of 103 stores, which since the sale was reduced from 153, in various New England, Mid-Atlantic, Midwestern and Western states. The company posted a net loss of $35.2 million on revenue of $163.2 million in the second quarter vs. a net loss of $34.3 million on sales of $186.8 million in the prior year. The company, now known as Tweeter Newco LLC, filed for bankruptcy protection in June.