Dots Names Rhodes CEO

Dots, which is backed by Irving Place Capital, has hired Lisa Rhodes as its CEO. Rhodes if the form SVP of Wal-Mart’s U.S. apparel merchandising division. Also, Dots said Wednesday it planned to create a merchandise center in New York City.


Dots today announced the next steps of its plan to grow into a 1,000-store, national fashion retailer.  The company has hired Lisa Rhodes, former Senior Vice President of Wal-Mart’s U.S. apparel merchandising division, as CEO.  The retailer also announced plans to create a Dots merchandise center in New York City.
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“I am thrilled to have the opportunity to lead the Dots team into the future.  The brand has amazing potential as Dots serves a dynamic, underserved, and fast-growing customer base.  I am confident that the combination of our renewed focus on customer service with our ability to bring the right fashion trends into the store will capture the hearts and wallets of customers,” said Ms. Rhodes.
Ms. Rhodes brings to Dots more than 30 years of experience in retail.  Prior to her role at Wal-Mart, she spent 11 years as EVP/Chief Merchandising Officer for Maurice’s.  Ms. Rhodes also previously worked at Charming Shoppes, Marshall’s, and Macy’s.
“Lisa is a transformational leader,” said John Howard, CEO of Irving Place Capital, Dots’ private equity partner.  “Her ability to focus on a clearly articulated strategy and the target customer has proven successful in driving both top and bottom line results.”
Rick Bunka will remain President at Dots, overseeing the balance of the corporate support functions in Glenwillow, Ohio, where the company’s store operations, distribution, financial, human resources, and information technology segments will stay.
Mr. Bunka added, “These moves are a bold step to propel Dots into a true national retailer.  Lisa’s skill set and experience will leverage the significant progress the Dots team has made in improving the shopping environment for our customers, developing our state-of-the-art distribution center, and enhancing our senior executive talent.”
“The entire Dots organization will benefit from Lisa’s retail expertise and from a real merchandising presence in New York City,” said John Howard, CEO of Irving Place Capital.  “With Lisa’s and Rick’s stewardship, I am confident that the company is going to accelerate its growth trajectory.”
Dots currently has more than 400 stores in 28 states.  Irving Place Capital made an investment in the company in January 2011.