Build-A-Bear names new chief product officer

Build-A-Bear Workshop (NYSE:BBW) named Jennifer Kretchmar chief product officer and innovation bear, effective immediately.

Kretchmar will lead the company's merchandising and product development teams while reporting to Sharon John, CEO, Build-A-Bear Workshop. Kretchmar will be responsible for product development, design, quality, sourcing, merchandising, planning and wholesale, according to a company statement.

"Jenn is a seasoned merchandising executive with 20 years of experience in senior leadership roles with both toys and children's products," John said. "I am pleased to have her join the team and confident that she will bring valuable perspective as we evolve our business model to leverage the strength of the Build-A-Bear Workshop brand and drive future growth."

Kretchmar most recently acted as senior VP of product and brand management at Stride Rite Children's Group of Wolverine World Wide. While there, she was responsible for the global product creation strategy for a wide range of children's footwear brands, including Stride Rite, Sperry Top-Sider, Saucony, Keds, Merrell, Robeez, Jessica Simpson and Hush Puppies. She is also familiar with business models such as specialty retail, wholesale and international franchising. Press Release