This week in retail leadership

Vale Hairhouse Warehouse co-founder, Joseph Lattouf

Joseph Lattouf (pictured), co-founder of Hairhouse Warehouse, passed away on June 17 after a year-long battle with cancer. He was 53.

Melbourne brothers Tony and Joseph Lattouf established the hair business in 1992 with a store in Knox City in the city’s eastern suburbs. Joseph brought his hairdressing experience, Tony his retail and business knowhow.

Today, the business has more than 130 outlets across the country and includes Australian Skin Clinics. It underwent a brand transformation last year and is now known as Hairhouse.

Joseph Lattouf once said: “Evolution is everything. We’ve got to keep changing; we’ve got to keep things happening.  I’m very proud on behalf of all my partners – you are all my partners.”

The Hairhouse directors have issued a statement, expressing their deep sadness.

“We have lost a visionary and leader, and our community has lost an inspiring human being, a dear friend and mentor,” it said.

“For all of us at Hairhouse, Joseph doesn’t just leave behind a company, but a legacy. Through this business, Joseph (and his brother Tony) redefined the landscape of the Australian hair industry.”

Zimmerman moves to Eftpos

Former executive director of the Australian Retailers Association (ARA), Russell Zimmerman, has joined Eftpos Australia, a move he sees as a continuation of his role of advocating for retailers and the retail industry.

The main focus of Zimmerman’s role will be least-cost routing, a method that aims to send debit transactions to the lowest cost network. This is of great importance to retailers, particularly at a time when so many transactions are happening online. Despite the Reserve Bank of Australia telling banks as far back as 2018 to support least-cost routing or risk regulation, they have largely failed to do so.

Earlier this year, the ARA joined a number of retail organisations in forming the Fairer Merchant Fees Alliance to raise awareness of the benefits of least-cost routing and pressure the RBA to force the banks to implement it.

The new appointment is effective July 1. Zimmerman headed the ARA for 11 years, and has 35 years’ experience in retail.

TikTok hires local managers

Chinese social video platform TikTok has appointed a local team for its new Australian office, led by former Google and YouTube executives Lee Hunter and Brett Armstrong.

 Hunter will become general manager for TikTok Australia, while Armstrong will be the general manager of global business solutions.

Additionally, Brett Thomas will serve as director for public policy and Arjun Narayan Bettadapur Manjunath as the head of trust and safety for APAC.

Hunter spent over a decade at Google, where he held a number of roles, including global head of brands for YouTube.

Armstrong was Google’s country manager for New Zealand, and the head of media agencies for Australia and New Zealand.

The local team will be overseen by Vanessa Pappas, general manager of TikTok US.

Over the past 18 months, TikTok has hired local teams in the US, UK, India, Japan and Canada, strengthening its global reach.

 Armstrong says campaigns are already underway to grow TikTok Australia.

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