Mohamed Amer

Independent Board Member, Investor and Startup Advisor

Living in Southern California, Mohamed is keen on applying his corporate and entrepreneurial executive leadership across strategy, technology, and communications in the service of progressive boards of directors, c-suites, and startup companies.

Building teams and driving results spanning multiple industry sectors and domains, Mohamed brings successful experience in public and private sectors across mission-critical operational, supply chain, strategy, communications, and technology roles.  He is a highly trusted coach and advisor for senior executives and entrepreneurs in the technology and consumer-facing industries.

During his tenure at SAP, Mohamed held several senior roles that included leading the solution footprint, M&A, and go-to-market strategy for the global grocery business, and developing the future supply chain product area for retail. While leading the Retail Business Unit in the Americas, he supported business development, key customer implementations, and strategic relationships as well as managing key user groups and executive customer councils. He also led internal and external communication roles across multiple sectors and most recently having responsibility for executive communications in SAP’s Office of the Co-Presidents.

Prior to SAP, Mohamed was co-founder and President of NEXstep, an Internet supply chain software startup which was acquired by Viewlocity.  He also held leadership positions in the retail management consultancy, Kurt Salmon Associates (acquired by Accenture) with extensive Retail and CPG client engagements as well as general management roles in the office products industry at Boise Cascade and Buhrmann-Tetterode.

Mohamed held a commission with the United States Navy (Lieutenant Commander – naval aviation and naval intelligence). Mohamed holds a Ph.D. in Human and Organizational Systems from Fielding Graduate University; in addition, he has earned an MBA at Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management, and an M.A. in National Security Affairs at the U.S. Naval Postgraduate School.

  • Posted on: 03/04/2021

    Is Texas messing with retailers?

    Politics and public safety have not mixed well for the past year, and now Texas is upping the ante. Going all in to boost the state’s economy and return to social normality is commendable if you control the virus's spread and most of your citizens are vaccinated. Otherwise, the governor is shifting the limelight from the failures over the great freeze to announcing the state's opening on Texas Liberation Day. Retailers going against the state’s bully pulpit face the difficult task of doing right by their customers and employees at the risk of verbal abuse, if not actual assault. The politics of popularity can be dangerous.
  • Posted on: 03/02/2021

    Is off-mall where it’s at?

    Off-mall needs to be part of your real estate portfolio -- this adds optionality to your customer and merchandising strategy: from creative shopping experiences to curated assortments and treasure hunts. The move to off-mall is here to stay, and customers will continue to flock to off-mall retailers.
  • Posted on: 03/02/2021

    Macy’s leadership changes focus on digital ops and supply chain

    Eliminating the COO gives Macy’s a flatter organization. The technology leadership change adds fresh blood to Macy’s executive leadership. These good moves are tempered by the realities of the company’s cost structure, store size, and a shift away from department stores. Mr. Gennette owns these new management decisions as he has with prior ones. The comps for the rest of 2021 should reflect strong double-digit growth; anything less will disappoint. The rate of change in retail accelerated in 2020 and continues this year. Macy’s leaders must change the company at an even faster pace for the company to remain relevant and ensure they are at the helm in early 2022.
  • Posted on: 02/25/2021

    What’s next for mask mandates?

    Mask fatigue or new habits? Let medical experts lead the way; Some may choose to wear masks when none are mandated. That is their choice and it causes no harm to others. Local conditions on the state of COVID-19 will dictate the return to pre-pandemic normality. Those that have lost family or friends have experienced deep losses and have realized the preciousness of life. Post-pandemic, I expect people will desire cleaner and more hygienic public spaces and will have a greater awareness of ways to limit the spread of contagious diseases.
  • Posted on: 02/25/2021

    Are Americans ready to do some good old-fashioned ‘revenge shopping’?

    We’ve already seen the bump, but comps will be extremely favorable for the next several months against the lockdown periods of 2020. All categories will benefit, but discretionary categories will gain more so. Given the relaxed restrictions and increasing vaccination rates, I prefer to call it splurging, or to be more upbeat, a celebration of life and a return to a sense of normality. Revenge shopping, no; celebratory shopping, yes!
  • Posted on: 02/24/2021

    Best Buy is handing out bonuses, paid time off for vaccines and pink slips. Huh?

    Store associates are the brand ambassadors in any selling environment. Taking care of frontline employees makes dollars and sense, so keeping them and customers safe adds to the trust equation. As to the concerns raised by reported pink slips, these need to be taken within the big picture. Overall, Best Buy is doing many things right by their employees and customers; reducing hours and layoffs are unpleasant and never easy decisions but are needed at times to position the company for longer-term viability and growth.
  • Posted on: 02/24/2021

    Macy’s says it will recover and rebuild coming off a tough 2020

    Macy’s has already realized that their future is a hybrid model of online and physical stores, as evidenced by Macy’s Adrian Mitchell’s comment on the earnings call. The challenge is that each Macy's store represents an unavoidable fixed cost, and online sales would have to accelerate massively to offset that drag. Yes, well-integrated online and offline sales and fulfillment models work, but Macy’s is unlikely to find that sweet spot considering its current portfolio.
  • Posted on: 02/24/2021

    Can making deliveries once a week make e-commerce sustainable and more profitable?

    Olive’s value proposition is differentiated and meets a market niche. It builds on Amazon’s consolidated delivery option but enhances it with a more environmentally friendly approach. Although it may not turn into a broad trend, don’t underestimate the convenience of breaking down fewer cartons that overflow the recycling bin. Partner retailers will enjoy the greatly simplified outbound leg of this supply chain with little downside in sharing data with Olive.
  • Posted on: 02/23/2021

    Are outlet centers immune to the ills of regional malls?

    Consumers associate value with outlet centers. The diverse portfolio of brands and concentration in an open-air mall environment provides a safer treasure hunt experience. As highlighted by Georganne, make it a fun, party-like environment, and as the numbers proved, they will come.
  • Posted on: 02/23/2021

    What’s so funny about authenticity, integrity and transparency?

    Companies that retain a founder’s mindset are more prepared to be authentic, transparent, and communicate with integrity. Among established companies, these consumer-facing qualities become pillars and habits when the company's internal culture reflects these positive attributes. Don’t expect a fear-based or my way or the highway company culture to generate an authentic customer culture.
  • Posted on: 02/23/2021

    Activist investors attempt takeover of Kohl’s board of directors

    From real estate plays to inventory reductions, these are indeed reminders of opportunities presented at Sears or J.C. Penney.
  • Posted on: 02/23/2021

    Activist investors attempt takeover of Kohl’s board of directors

    Coming out of the pandemic, Kohl’s represents low-hanging fruit for these activists - and the current board and management. The argument presented by the activist group is proper at a high level but provides broad brush platitudes on actual specifics for the way forward. The real estate sale and leaseback proposal is a steroid for the balance sheet but diminishes future flexibility and enterprise value. The assortment criticism is valid, but Kohl’s management does not need a new board to rectify it. Kohl’s has an opportunity to do better as long as they consider and selectively act on some of the inputs.
  • Posted on: 02/23/2021

    Activist investors attempt takeover of Kohl’s board of directors

    Kohl’s represents a low hanging fruit opportunity for the activist group as well as current management.
  • Posted on: 01/29/2021

    Are small brands eating big food’s lunch?

    Small brands’ primary weapon is their decision-making speed and agility. Their strategy is to out-innovate the bigger brands while engendering trust and healthy quality products. Newness combines with healthful and nutritional ingredients to create excitement in the mundane while rewarding the consumer with the aura of more nutritious cuisine. Small brands deliver on multiple elements essential to consumers; this was exaggerated during the pandemic yet will remain intact post-pandemic.
  • Posted on: 01/27/2021

    NRF 2021: Fanatics’ CEO showcases benefits of vertical commerce

    All the talk about agility and speed is meaningless if your executives and managers are not empowered to make informed decisions based on quality and timely data. A diverse and high-quality management team with a bias for action and adaptive learning is necessary to execute on the agility and speed that come from vertical commerce

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