Brad Weston on Wednesday was named president of Party City Holdco and CEO of Party City Retail Group, effective July 25, according to a company press release.
Weston will "play a key role in driving the Company's strategic growth initiatives across its vertically integrated business" and will lead all aspects of Party City's retail operations, per the release. He will report to the CEO of PCHI, James Harrison.
Weston was formerly the CEO of Petco, where he worked in various roles from 2011 to 2018. Prior to that, he worked as the chief merchandising officer at Dick's Sporting Goods.
It's been a game of musical chairs for two large specialty retailers this week. The disclosure of Weston's appointment comes right after Wednesday's reveal that teen accessories retailer Claire's hired Ryan Vero — the former president of Party City, as it tries to recover from a Chapter 11 filing in March 2018.
In May, Party City announced that the retailer is preparing to close 45 stores in an effort to free up capital to expand into "underserved markets." On an earnings call the company further explained that it would open more than 200 additional stores and is testing smaller format stores that are between 7,000 and 10,000 square feet. The retailer also expressed concern over an ongoing helium shortage, which directly impacted its latex and metallic balloon sales, and which the company tied to a 1.4% fall in comparable sales during its first quarter.
"Mr. Weston's appointment as President could serve as a stepping stone for him to become Party City's CEO in the future as the board considers succession," Telsey Advisory Group said in a statement emailed to Retail Dive by lead analyst Joseph Feldman.
Party City has over 900 retail party supply stores, including Party City and Halloween City, throughout North America.