GrowGeneration names chief merchant

Paul Rutenis brings more than 20 years of retail experience to his new role as chief merchant officer of GrowGeneration.
David Salazar
Managing Editor
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GrowGeneration names chief merchant

Hydroponic and organic garden center retailer GrowGeneration has a new head of merchandising. The Denver-based company has named Paul Rutenis its chief merchant officer, effective June 21. 

Rutenis brings to the company more than 20 years of retail experience, including time at Dick’s Sporting Goods, West Marine, JCPenney and RadioShack, with his experience encompassing private brands, among other responsibilities. At GrowGeneration, he will be focused on building out the company’s private brands. 

"We're pleased to bring a seasoned merchandising executive of Paul's caliber to the GrowGeneration team," said Darren Lampert, GrowGen's CEO. "Paul has years of experience leading retail and merchandising strategy for some of the nation's largest retail chains. His insights will be invaluable as GrowGen continues to scale and build a national chain of hydroponic garden centers and best-in-class private-label brands."

Most recently, he served as executive vice president at West Marine, where he spearheaded the company’s omnichannel push. While with Dick’s Sporting Goods from 2006 to 2011, Rutenis was charged with driving sales and gross margin expansion among the retailer’s private brand and national brand products. 

"I'm honored to join GrowGeneration's leadership team at this time of record growth and expansion," said Rutenis. "GrowGen is uniquely positioned in one of the most exciting and dynamic emerging industries in the country, and I look forward to helping build GrowGen's national brand and portfolio of private label products."