Leading transformation at 130-year-old Conn’s HomePlus

Retail Gets Real Episode 278: CEO Chandra Holt on innovation and unified commerce

The retail industry is fast-paced and constantly changing, forcing retailers to evolve and innovate regularly. The opportunities for innovation are endless, even for the oldest companies.

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Chandra Holt
Chandra Holt,
CEO of Conn’s HomePlus

When Chandra Holt, a 20-year retail veteran who worked her way up the ranks at leading retailers, including serving as executive vice president for ecommerce at Walmart, looked at the opportunity to become CEO of Conn’s HomePlus, she was intrigued. How does a little company out of Texas manage next-day white-glove delivery for big-ticket items like refrigerators? And how can the company lean into strengths like these to grow for the next 130 years?

Holt joined the Retail Gets Real podcast to share her vision for the future of Conn’s HomePlus, how the company is expanding financing like layaway services, and the strategy behind expanding the “store-within-a-store" partnership with Belk across multiple locations in the southern United States.

Holt and the Conn’s team are reshaping the business through a vision that “everyone deserves a home they love,” she said. “That vision is anchored in our history of being able to provide access through financing to our customers.”

It also includes leaning into ecommerce and creating a truly unified shopping experience across platforms. “I believe we can become one of the first truly unified commerce retailers out there, where we have one system that runs everything,” Holt said. “Great companies understand that there are going to be times of change that they need to refocus or enhance what they're doing.”

Listen to the full podcast to learn more about the unique business model that includes financing for big-ticket items, a focus on fast service and leading change.

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