Apple is said to have hired an international header hunter to help them look for a new retail chief. This information came from WSJ and of late, WSJ has printed a couple of questionable posts regarding Steve Jobs and Apple.
Having said that, this post regarding Apple's plan makes sense. The international market is increasingly more important to Apple as growth. In the last few years, Apple became increasingly reliant on the international markets for its sky-rocketing growth. Apple's revenue in China alone was $3.8 billion in the last quarter, an increase of 6X from a year ago.
And with a strong brand, there is much Apple can benefit with a continuing strong retail presence.