Embattled fashion chain Ted Baker has appointed a new chief executive as the retailer battles the challenges caused by the outbreak of coronavirus.
Acting chief executive Rachel Osborne will take on the role on a permanent basis, the company announced this morning. The former Debenhams finance chief took the reins in December when Lindsay Page and executive chairman David Bernstein quit suddenly following a profit warning.
Osborne, who previously held senior positions at Domino’s, Vodafone and John Lewis, joined Ted Baker in November as chief financial officer before being promoted to acting chief executive the following month.
Her appointment comes as the high street brand, and the rest of the UK retail sector, faces unprecedented challenges due to the coronavirus pandemic, which has caused government to order the closure of all non-essential shops.
Ted Baker has already struggled in recent months, with a string of profit warnings, the departure of its chief executive and chairman and a £58m accounting error dragging its share price down.
Founder Ray Kelvin was also forced to step down last year following accusations of harassment, which he denies.
Osborne said: “The time I have spent at Ted Baker has quickly confirmed to me what a special business this is.
“We have challenges to face into in the coming months, not least the significant uncertainty caused by COVID-19, but I am confident that we will succeed through the hard work of our colleagues and the strength of our brand.
“Over the last few months we have put together a clear plan to transform Ted Baker and ensure its long-term success. I look forward to leading the business through this critical period of change and seeing the benefits of our plan come to fruition.”