What makes him powerful: For a number of years competitor RadioShack had held the title of the best Big Box retailer of wireless devices, however that status has been challenged over the past year by Best Buy. And much of Best Buy's aggressive moves in the wireless space can be attributed to Brad Anderson. Anderson has been CEO of the consumer electronics retailer since 2002, and over the past few years he has helped usher the big box chain store into the wireless realm.
In May 2008, Best Buy agreed to buy a 50 percent stake in U.K. mobile retailer Carphone Warehouse, and since then the company has been expanding its Best Buy Mobile sections in its retail stores. Currently it has 200 wireless-focused retail sections in Best Buy stores nationwide. The company wants to have between 30 and 50 standalone Best Buy Mobile outlets up and running by year-end.
Anderson has also pushed Best Buy to make some firsts. In September, Best Buy became the first third-party retailer to sell Apple's iPhone 3G and looks to capitalize on that market position as sales of the iPhone 3G take off ahead of the holiday shopping season.
In mid-September, Best Buy also acquired digital music pioneer and content provider Napster for $121 million. That deal included Napster's mobile offering, Napster Mobile, an over-the-air music offering from AT&T. Best Buy also scooped up the mobile initiatives Napster had with O2 UK and NTT DoCoMo.
All of this adds up to an increasingly diversified wireless technology portfolio for Best Buy, and the designation that it is one of the leading, if not the leading electronics retailer in the mobile space.