Last year, Best Buy halted the expansion of test stores dressed up with skylights and other improvements after Joly concluded they weren’t delivering enough sales to justify the costs, he told reporters last month in New York. Instead, he made less-expensive changes in existing stores, giving more space to the biggest sellers such as smartphones, tablets, appliances and accessories.
Best Buy shares hit a 12-year closing low of $11.29 on Dec. 28, capping the fourth annual decline in the previous five years. Then the shares began rebounding as holiday sales stabilized with discounts on smartphones and the price-matching policy.
Schulze, who owns 20% of Best Buy, failed in his takeover bid in February. A month later, he returned to the board as chairman emeritus, with an office for life, regular meetings with Joly and a requirement to notify the CEO when he plans to visit the office.