Christopher Ladd departs after a failed e-commerce platform implementation.
Bill Briggs , Senior Editor
Two months after The Finish Line Inc. aborted an e-commerce platform conversion its top web executive has resigned. Christopher Ladd, executive vice president and chief digital officer, resigned effective Feb. 1, Finish Line says. The search for his replacement is under way, Finish Line says.
The athletic shoes and apparel retailer did not disclose a reason for Ladd’s departure, nor did it respond to a request for comment. But the company lost $3 million in sales in the third quarter because of web site performance problems following rollout of new e-commerce technology in November, Glenn Lyon, chairman and CEO, said during an earnings conference call in early January.
“Following the launch it became apparent the customer experience was negatively impacted, evidenced by a decline in several key performance factors,” Lyon said. “We made a strategic decision on Dec. 6 to transition back to our previous site given the importance of the selling season.” Lyon did not elaborate on the performance issues, but noted the former platform had been kept operational as a contingency.
Lyon did not name the vendor that provided the new platform, but on Nov. 19 Finish Line, No. 151 in the Internet Retailer Top 500 Guide issued a press release announcing the relaunch of its site using services from e-commerce platform provider Demandware Inc. and digital marketing agency Big Spaceship. Demandware and Big Spaceship did not respond to Internet Retailer’s request for comment.
Ladd joined Finish Line in November 2011 after serving as senior vice president for global e-commerce at women’s athletic apparel retailer Lululemon Athletica Inc., No. 162 in the 2012 Top 500, from February to November of that year. Prior to that he was senior vice president, global marketing, of footwear manufacturer Crocs Inc., No. 183, from 2008 to 2010.