New York City -- Mike Boylson, formerly executive VP and CMO of J.C. Penney, has traded retailing for baseball. The 32-year J.C. Penney veteran, who officially stepped down from the company on July 1, and a friend are opening a franchise of D-Bat, a baseball and softball training academy, Advertising Age reported. The facility is due to open this fall.
Boylson’s new venture will be located in Allen, Texas, not far from J.C. Penney’s headquarters in Plano. According to the report, the 27,000-sq.-ft. location will feature batting cages, including a designated "showcase cage" with clay pitcher's mounds, a pro-shop and a parents' lounge. Other offerings include classes, camps and clinics.
Industry experts have speculated that Boylson’s sudden retirement was the first part of a general houskeeping that would occur under new incoming CEO Ron Johnson. But Boylson had no idea about Johnson’s impending appointment when he told J.C. Penney CEO Myron “Mike” Ullman that he planned to retire early, according to the report. Boyson is 56.