Reports say Samsung hires away Apple store designer

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Reports say Samsung hires away Apple store designer

Samsung Electronics is reported to have hired Tim Gudgel, a senior Apple Store designer, in what is seen as a bid to strengthen its retail presence in the United States.

Samsung has sold its devices through about 1,400 Samsung Experience Shops, mini-stores located in Best Buy outlets.

The Information, a U.S. tech news website, broke the story, citing two unnamed sources. The Wall Street Journal said Gudgel was hired this month as vice president and general manager of retail operations in the United States.

Gudgel worked as a director at Apple since March 2008 and is known to have helped the company develop its distinctive Apple stores.

In October, Best Buy executives visited the Seoul office of Samsung Electronics, hinting that the U.S. big-box electronics retailer was interested in maintaining its partnership with Samsung.

The Suwon-based company has yet to confirm a change in its retail strategy in the United States.

Gudgel is the second Apple employee Samsung has snapped up this year after Michael Forrest, another Apple retail expert.

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