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Clinton Cards hires new chief executive

Greeting cards retailer Clinton Cards has announced the appointment of Darcy Willson-Rymer as its new chief executive Officer. Currently managing drector at Starbucks UK and Ireland, Willson-Rymer will join Clintons in October.


Clinton Cards hires new chief executive

Current chief executive and Chairman, Don Lewin, will  become non executive chairman from 1 August 2011. 78-year-old Lewin, who founded Clinton Cards in 1968, will also take on the role of Life President in March next year.

Before joining Starbucks in 2007, Willson-Rymer spent three years with Unilever Ventures and 19 years with Yum! Brands. At Clintons he will work closely with Clinton Lewin, group managing director, and will focus on the group's property portfolio and on strategic supplier relationships.   

Clintons has aslo announced that it will be appointing two non executive directors to replace John Coleman and Robert Gunlack who will be retiring from the Board. Clintons said that further announcements on these appointments will be made in due course.

Don Lewin said: "The Board is very grateful to John Coleman and Robert Gunlack, both of whom have made a tremendous contribution to the Group during their time on the Board.
"Having founded Clinton Cards over 40 years ago, the time is now right for me to assume a non-executive role.  The changes announced today will bring important new experience to our senior management team and strengthen the Board.
"I welcome Darcy to the Board of Clinton Cards.  His strong retail, brand, management and customer relationship experience and skills will be of great benefit as we develop the Group through the changing retail environment."
Darcy Willson-Rymer said: "I am delighted to be joining Clinton Cards. While it has a great heritage as the UK's leading cards and gifts retailer, I am very excited to have the opportunity to help take the business forward in the new retail environment to the benefit of customers and all stakeholders." 

Shares in Clinton Cards have lost nearly two thirds of their value over the last year as the company struggles in the face of competition from supermarkets and onlin card retailers.

In March the company posted a 41% drop in its first half pre-tax profit and reported a further fall in sales in May.

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