BUSINESS
12/02/2015 10:02 pm ET

RadioShack Hires TV Star Nick Cannon As Creative Officer

The long-struggling retailer aims to update its image, but keep stores' "neighborhood feel."
Screenshot Nick Cannon RadioShack vid

It's no secret that RadioShack has been struggling to stay afloat. As part of its makeover, the retailer on Wednesday announced it hired "Wild 'N Out" star Nick Cannon as chief creative officer.

RadioShack, owned by General Wireless after filing for bankruptcy protection this year, is restructuring to focus on innovation, education, DIY products and providing an in-person "neighborhood feel," Michael Tatelman, RadioShack's chief marketing officer, told The Huffington Post. 

"Nick approached us," Tatelman said. "He’s tech-savvy and he’s a tastemaker. He’s really smart and really creative. Once we got to know him, it was a pretty easy decision to get him on board."

Cannon, who stars in the new film "Chi-Raq," will influence the selection and display of merchandise. He'll also spot market trends and help grow the retailer's initiatives supporting STEM education -- science, technology, engineering and mathematics, Tatelman said.  

The new RadioShack creative chief was already at work promoting the chain on Wednesday. 

In a video uploaded to Twitter, Cannon visited St. Mary's Children Hospital in New York, talking to children about creativity and technology, with RadioShack merchandise. 

"RadioShack is back," Cannon and a few children chanted in the video. 

The 94-year-old company closed and sold hundreds of stores and fired workers before filing for bankruptcy in February. 

General Wireless, a division of hedge fund Standard General, acquired the brand in April. It now has more than 1,700 company-owned stores, including 1,400 Sprint stores at RadioShack, according to a press release. 

Tatelman said RadioShack's neighborhood feel is essential to the brand. 

"We kind of felt that the brand and neighborhood convenience electronics store shouldn’t die," Tatelman said. "We’ve been working hard to revitalize the store. And kind of rebuild."

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