Samsung Poaches Apple Store Designer

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Is nothing sacred in the Samsung vs. Apple clash, we ask you?

It might have recently been ordered to pay Apple $930 million in damages (with a possible side order of Apple legal fees), but Samsung still scored a personal victory this month by hiring away Apple’s senior store designer, Tim Grudgel.

Samsung has noted that Gudgel joined the company as VP and General Manager of Retail-Sales Operations. No word currently on his responsibilities.

Grudgel worked at Apple since March 2008. He played a key role in designing various aspects of the Apple Stores, including the curved glass roof on Apple’s Upper West Side store in Manhattan, on which he is listed as a patent holder.

The hire raises questions about Samsung’s retail strategy. While Samsung has a few retail shops overseas — including in its home market of South Korea — its North American presence is limited to a partnership with Best Buy, which offers allocated space within its stores for the “Samsung Experience”.

If Samsung is planning its own line of stores, let’s hope they wind up more like Apple’s than Microsoft’s, eh?

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