TROUBLED retailer Mothercare pinned its hopes of a domestic turnaround on the internet yesterday when it appointed the head of Lovefilm International as its new chief executive.
Simon Calver will join the mother and baby chain in April. He replaces Ben Gordon, who quit in October after a profit warning.
Calver (pictured), whose current employer was sold to Amazon a year ago, will be charged with rebuilding Mothercare after its UK arm was hit by competition from supermarkets and online retailers and the high street downturn. The group made a first-half loss but the overseas arm, which contributes just under 50 per cent of profits, is booming.
Alan Parker, who had been running Mothercare on an interim basis, resumes the role of non-executive chairman. He said Calver’s “e-commerce and brand expertise will enable Mothercare to accelerate its development as a multi-channel retailer in the UK.”
Analyst Andrew Wade at Numis said: “This looks to be a strong appointment, bringing considerable new skills and experience to the business, predominantly focusing around brand development, online execution and international progression.”
Shares in Mothercare, which have more than halved over the past year, bounced 7.69 per cent to 217p.