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Boohoo appoints new chief executive

Online fashion retail group Boohoo has appointed John Lyttle as chief executive. He will join the group from Primark in March next year.

FASHION

Boohoo appoints new chief executive

Online fashion retail group Boohoo has appointed John Lyttle as chief executive. He will join the group from Primark in March next year.

Currently chief operating officer of Primark, Lyttle has seen the fashion retailer’s turnover increase by 158% to over £7 billion and operating profit rise by 116% to £735 million during his eight-year tenure. Prior to Primark, he held senior roles at Matalan and Arcadia.

Boohoo said the appointment will help it to achieve its next stage of growth. The group, which also owns the Pretty Little Thing and Nasty Gal brands, is also making some changes to its board responsibilities to support international expansion.

Current joint chief executive Mahmud Kamani will become group executive chairman as part of the changes. This will involve him moving away from the day-to-day running of the business to focus on strategic direction.

Meanwhile Carol Kane, who is also currently joint chief executive, will remain on the board but assume the title of group co-founder and executive director. Boohoo said Kane will continue to lead the vision for its creativity and multi-brand strategy and oversee the development of the product proposition.

Kamani and Kane said: "We are thrilled to have secured a candidate of John's calibre as our CEO. We have got to know John over a number of years and are convinced he has the necessary skills to complement what we already have and take the group on to its next stage of growth. Both of us remain totally committed to the business and will ensure a measured and careful handover.”

They added: “This is a hugely exciting time for the group as the fast fashion market continues to shift online and more and more customers across the globe are joining as customers of our brands. The group has experienced exceptional growth over the past few years, with turnover increasing 24 fold from £24.5 million in 2011 to £579.8 million for the year ended 28 February 2018 and we believe John is ideally placed to guide the group through the next stage of its growth.”

In a further change, Peter Williams will be stepping down from his role as non-executive chairman, also in March. Boohoo said it is planning to recruit a further independent non-executive director and that the search for a suitable candidate is due to start “imminently”.

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