BUSINESS

Lowe's hires former Loblaws exec as new president for Canadian division

02/08/2013 04:55 EST | Updated 04/10/2013 05:12 EDT
MOORESVILLE, N.C. - Lowe's Companies Inc. (NYSE:LOW) has hired a former Loblaws executive to be the new president of its Canadian division.

Sylvain Prud'homme will take the leadership role on March 25.

He replaces current president Alan Huggins, who is returning to the U.S. to serve as Lowe's vice-president of international operations and development.

The home improvement retailer said it chose Prud'homme because of his experience in national and international retail merchandising.

Before serving as the executive vice-president of operations and merchandising for Loblaw, Prud'homme worked for retail giant Wal-Mart and grocers Sobey's and Super C.

"He is a strategic thinker and a humble leader, and will be an outstanding addition to the Canada leadership team," said William Robinson, Lowe's head of international operations and development, in a statement.

Lowe's, which is based in Mooresville, N.C., operates 1,745 stores in North America — with the majority in the United States. There are 34 locations and a distribution centre in Canada.

Last September, the company retreated from an attempt to acquire Quebec-based rival Rona (TSX:RON) through a $1.8-billion deal that was shunned by Rona's board.

Since expanding to Canada in 2007, Lowe's has tried to grow its presence in a competitive market that already includes retail giants Home Depot and Rona.

In November, it hinted that it was still considering an acquisition in Canada but would not name a target company.

Lowe's is the second-largest home improvement retailer in the world and reported sales of US$50.2 billion in fiscal 2011.