Ron Johnson, the mastermind behind Apple’s successful retail store strategy, has left Apple to become the CEO of JCPenney according to Bloomberg (terminal) via Business Insider.

Johnson’s bio remains active at Apple.com and we’re waiting for confirmation.  Meanwhile Apple Orchard is also reporting the same info.  Johnson’s bio:

Ron Johnson joined Apple as senior vice president in January 2000. Reporting directly to the CEO, Johnson leads Apple’s retail strategy and is responsible for its overall execution and performance. Under Ron’s leadership, Apple has opened over 300 stores to date.  Johnson has over 20 years of experience in retail and merchandising as well as a strong track record for delivering consistent year over year growth for billion-dollar companies.

Before joining Apple, Johnson held various management positions at the Target Corporation, most recently as Vice President of Merchandising for Target Stores. In this capacity, Johnson presided over a successful period of growth at Target, playing a key role in developing new initiatives for branding, marketing and merchandising. He led the team responsible for launching the Michael Graves exclusive line of products, as well as the addition of other key brands to the store’s selection.

Johnson received his M.B.A. from Harvard and his Bachelor of Arts in Economics from Stanford University.

Update: The WSJ has now verified the appointment which should be announced later today.

JCP stock has rocketed over 12% on the news (below)


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