Why Nordstrom Just Appointed Intuit CEO Brad Smith to the Board

Posted by Ryan Robinson on Jun 26, 2013

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Department store Nordstrom, Inc. announced today that it's appointing Intuit CEO Brad Smith to the company's Board of Directors in a move to boost innovation and revive a startup mentality.

Nordstrom has long been regarded as one of the most innovative & successful upscale US fashion retailers. With over 200 locations in the US & Canada and a highly profitable online business featuring Norstrom.com and flash-sale fashion site HauteLook.com, Nordstrom is continuing to propel innovation in the industry.

The Company's announcement today that Intuit CEO Brad Smith is joining the Board of Directors signals that Nordstrom will not stop innovating any time soon.

Smith has been President and CEO at Intuit since January 2008 where he previously led several of the company's business units for the five years leading up to his appointment as CEO. Intuit's three core business units are QuickBooks finance management software, GoPayment credit card acceptance technology and merchant services platform, and payroll services.

Under Smith's leadership, Intuit transformed from a stagnant 30-year-old Silicon Valley veteran into an innovative, young, startup-minded organization that now helps over 60 million consumers, small businesses, financial institutions, and accounting professionals worldwide. The company's grown revenues to $4 billion and now employs over 8,500 people around the world.

“Brad adds to the already strong talent and diverse expertise represented on our Board,” said Enrique Hernandez, Jr., Chairman of the Board of Directors for Nordstrom. “In addition to his corporate governance experience as a public company director, he brings an impressive track record of leading a successful customer-driven business with a reputation for developing innovative products and solutions. We’re delighted to have him on our team and look forward to his contribution as we work to improve the service experience and extend our reputation with customers and shareholders alike.”

How Nordstrom Will Benefit from Smith's Involvement

Smith has demonstrated his ability to reinvigorate a business and lead with a customer-centric approach. Intuit's strategic vision designed by Smith recognizes important market shifts that will serve as growth catalysts for the company's future. He recognizes that people and businesses increasingly go online to manage their lives, and abandon the traditional paper-based, human-produced, brick-and-mortar bound services of the past.

This expertise is held in high regard by Nordstrom, as the company has clearly set themselves apart from other US fashion retailers by investing significantly into the online, mobile, and tablet shopping experience for its customers. Quickly adapting to these trends has enabled Nordstrom to already become one of the most innovative fashion retailers in the industry. In 2011, the company purchased HauteLook.com, which has grown into the most popular fashion flash-sale website.

In short, Smith brings to the table his relentless drive to serve customers needs better than anyone else.

Innovation is a process that's never finished. How else do you see Smith influencing Nordstrom in the future?