Retailers mourn passing of Wai Tang

Veteran retailer Wai Tang passed away on February 16 after a short illness.

Tang had more than 30 years of experience in retail, a field she entered upon her graduation from university, working as a system and process consultant in the field of FMCG. 

From 1999 to 2009, she was operations director of Just Group; in 2006 she  was appointed CEO of Just Group’s sleepwear business Peter Alexander, a position she held concurrently; she is also a former GM of business development for underwear company Pacific Brands.

Tang left Just Group in June 2009 to start her own corporate advisory service, as well as a specialty retail concept in confectionery called Happy Lab.

In recent years she has been serving on several boards of directors, including since last August Metcash, where she was on the people and culture committee and the nomination committee.

Metcash chairman Rob Murray said the Metcash team’s thoughts are with Tang’s family, and expressed their heartfelt condolences.

Tang had been a non-executive director of JB Hi-Fi since 2015, where she was a member of remuneration committee and the audit and risk management committee.

“Wai’s passion for retail was evident through her time on the board, particularly her ongoing focus on our digital channels, customer experience and supply chain,” said JB Hi-Fi chairman Greg Richards.

She was also on the boards of Vicinity, Visit Victoria and the Melbourne International Arts Festival. According to the festival, she has provided advise to many prominent retailers such as Myer, Coles, the Sussan Group, General Pants Group, Pacific Brands, Yum Australia, Cosmetic Cubed, G-Star Raw and travel retailer AWPL.

Vicinity chairman Trevor Gerber said Tang was an outstanding director, and they would miss her enthusiastic contribution to their deliberations.

This is an edited version of a story that ran in Inside Retail Weekly.

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