Suzanne Given, the current Director of Fashion & Beauty at the John Lewis Partnership, has today been announced as the new Chief Operating Officer (COO) of fashion retailer Supergroup.
The owner of youth brands Superdry and Cult has created the COO position within its management structure to allow Given to drive operational efficiencies across the group, meaning that she will oversee central support functions including marketing, logistics, sourcing, IT and property.
Supergroup also announced today that Chief Financial Officer Chas Howes will be replaced in his current role by Shaun Wills, after the board member requested a less demanding role within the company for personal reasons.
Wills will join the group and replace Howes on the executive board on April 23rd 2012, while Given will begin work with the retailer on April 10th.
Peter Bamford, Chairman of Supergroup, commented: “I am delighted to welcome Susanne and Shaun to the group.
“They bring a wealth of branded retail expertise to the management team. Susanne‘s appointment will allow Supergroup CEO Julian Dunkerton the space and time to focus on the development of the Superdry brand and our product.
“I look forward to working with both Susanne and Shaun and on behalf of all at Supergroup I would like to express thanks to Chas for his total commitment and, in particular, his crucial role in taking the group through its transition into a public company.”
Before joining John Lewis, Given was Managing Director of discount fashion retailer TK Maxx and during her 20 years within the industry she has also worked at House of Fraser and Harrods in a number of different roles.
Wills was most recently COO of homewares specialist Habitat, which was bought out of administration and considerably reduced in size last summer. Immediately prior to this he was Finance Director at Fat Face, while between 2000 and 2008 he held numerous roles at fast-fashion firm New Look.
Dunkerton added: “I am very pleased that we have been able to attract people of the calibre of Susanne and Shaun to SuperGroup and I am very much looking forward to working closely with them both.
“Susanne and I have highly complementary skills and I am excited that we will now be able to maximise our potential.”