Content about Hank Mullaney

December 16, 2010

The word competition gets tossed around a lot in the retail industry as operators talk about market positioning -- who they do and don’t compete with. Oftentimes, companies will refer to direct competitors, but one thing about Walmart is that it has always tended to take the broad view of competition in that any company, no matter how small, who sold anything offered at Walmart was viewed as a competitor.

It not surprising then that Walmart didn’t take kindly to the announcement that CVS, a retailer who sells almost all the same stuff as Walmart, planned to hire former Walmart North president Hank Mullaney to serve as president of CVS’ retail business. Mullaney spent four years at Walmart and after an operational restructuring last year was elevated to a new position that required he sign a non-compete agreement. As a result, Walmart sued CVS minutes after a press release was issued announcing Mullaney’s appointment as their president. Now, Walmart has won a preliminary injunction blocking Mullaney from joining CVS pending the outcome of a hearing scheduled for March.

The word competition gets tossed around a lot in the retail industry as operators talk about market positioning -- who they do and don’t compete with. Oftentimes, companies will refer to direct competitors, but one thing about Walmart is that it has always tended to take the broad view of competition in that any company, no matter how small, who sold anything offered at Walmart was viewed as a competitor.