SuperGroup shakes up team at the top

 
Kasmira Jefford
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SUPERGROUP has added two new executives to its board as the fashion house looks to strengthen its management team and expand its presence overseas.

The company behind the Superdry brand said that Susanne Given, formerly John Lewis’ director of fashion and beauty, will take up the newly created role of chief operating officer next month.

Given, who has also worked for TK Maxx, will concentrate on improving SuperGroup’s operations and “driving efficiencies”across its UK retail business.

The move is designed to give founder and chief executive Julian Dunkerton more time to concentrate on building the brand.

Former Habitat chief operating officer Shaun Wills will also join next month as the group’s new finance director.

He replaces Chas Howes who, citing personal reasons, wished to have a role that was less demanding of his time. He will remain with the group but will stand down from the board in April.

Analysts welcomed the changes, viewing the newly created role as an attempt to make a break from what has been a tumultuous year since listing on the stock market in 2010.

Superdry’s expansion has been hampered by distribution problems last year and it surprised the market with a further profit warning last month.

The retailer operates 118 international stores, and plans to increase its estate abroad by 50 stores a year, also adding a further 20 in the UK.