b8ta Expands Leadership Team to Fuel Growth Into New Markets, Announces San Francisco and Austin Stores
Nintendo veteran Kevan Wilson named GM, Retail Partnerships and former Amazon design lead Su Quek tapped as VP of Product Design
March 9, 2017 – b8ta starts 2017 with new team additions set to support significant growth. As the software-powered retailer expands into new markets and partnerships, it has appointed Kevan Wilson as General Manager of Retail Partnerships and Su Quek as Vice President of Product Design. Kyle Schutter, International Partnerships Manager, will relocate to Taiwan to help connect b8ta with incubators and manufacturers in Asian markets. After securing a total of $19.5 million in funding and launching new stores in Santa Monica and Seattle in 2016, b8ta will continue its mission of elevating the retail experience for both makers and shoppers by opening new stores in San Francisco and Austin, as well as enhance its online presence.
A 30-year veteran in sales and marketing, Wilson has established a diverse portfolio, most notably serving as Vice President of Sales at Nintendo where he led a team of 200+ employees and drove retail strategy, retail marketing, merchandising, and sales. Prior to Nintendo, Wilson held a senior leadership position at global consumer goods company Unilever. With deep retail knowledge, Wilson has a strong understanding of the growth path and business model necessary to help retailers succeed using b8ta’s new approach.
“Kevan was one of our earliest advisors, and we jumped at the chance to bring him on board when the opportunity arose. b8ta is educating retailers globally about our new brick-and-mortar retail model, and I couldn’t think of a better person than Kevan to take on the task,” said Vibhu Norby, CEO of b8ta. “I’m equally excited to bring Su onboard to lead platform design for us. She brings empathy to design, with the incredible rigor and precision needed to solve the biggest design challenges anywhere in retail today.”
At b8ta, Wilson will focus on growing the company’s retail partnerships and engaging brands to elevate the retail experience. Currently, b8ta is the only software-powered retailer in the U.S. to have built a brick-and-mortar shopping experience that gives consumers the ability to touch and try tech products, while granting makers full control over shoppers’ experiences from start to finish. With the addition of Wilson as GM, Retail Partnerships, building relationships is at the forefront—including helping new tech companies penetrate the often closed-off retail industry within days, versus weeks.
“When launching new products, getting onto store shelves is critical. However, the process of getting a product to shelf is cumbersome and expensive and today’s retail market doesn’t provide an open, welcoming environment for consumers to understand these products, “ said Kevan Wilson, b8ta’s new GM, Retail Partnerships. “My passion for helping companies connect with consumers through retail perfectly aligns with b8ta’s mission to make retail accessible for everyone. b8ta is retail as a service and I’m excited to bring this model to new markets connecting retailers, makers and consumers in a whole new way”.
As VP of Product Design, Quek brings more than 15 years experience, previously heading design at Hello Network, as well as managing a UX Design group at Amazon and being a Principal Designer at Shutterfly. At b8ta, Quek will be responsible for leading the product design team to craft engaging experiences for b8ta’s partners and customers.
In addition to expanding in the U.S., b8ta is looking to help makers across the globe actualize their go-to-market strategies. To facilitate, Schutter takes partnerships outreach overseas, assuming his post in Taipei to build the company’s presence in Asia.
Founded in 2015, b8ta democratized the industry with its retail-as-a-service model that made brick-and-mortar retail accessible to any maker. b8ta is dedicated to enhancing consumers’ experience with new technology products, while working to improve the retail-entry process for makers. The company currently has three stores open across the west coast including Palo Alto, Santa Monica, and Seattle, and is expanding to San Francisco and Austin later this year.
To learn more about b8ta, visit b8ta.com, or find a b8ta store near you at www.b8ta.com/locations.
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