Argos has appointed John Walden as its new managing director.

The catalogue retailer said the American has “had a successful career in multi-channel retailing and technology businesses in the US”, including Best Buy and Sears.

Most recently he was chief executive at Activeion Cleaning Solutions, which sells environmental cleaning products. He also ran a retail consultancy in the US.

Walden, who takes up his position this month, was executive vice president at Best Buy and a member of the executive committee. 

At the US electricals giant Walden oversaw its online business and its customer strategy. He left the business in 2007.

Walden has also worked at Sears, where he led the internet, catalogue and home services divisions, as well as marketing, merchandising and new concept development. 

He replaces former Argos boss Sara Weller, who left last June for personal reasons.

The 52-year old will have a tough job at Argos, which has been suffering falling sales since 2008, including a like-for-like plummet of 8.8% for the 18 weeks to December 31.

Home Retail group chief executive Terry Duddy said: “I am delighted John is joining the team; he brings with him a wealth of multi-channel retail and technology related business experience at senior levels within a range of both large retail organisations and smaller entrepreneurial enterprises. 

“We look forward to John bringing a valuable, fresh perspective to the future development of Argos.”

Singer analyst Matthew McEachran said: “Whilst we welcome today’s appointment after nearly 10 months since Sara Weller’s departure, we are unsure of the relevance of Mr Walden’s recent track record to the role.

“We believe that Mr Walden will need to take a more radical approach to the store portfolio at Argos if the business is to reverse the sharp declines seen in recent years.”