Mar 10, 2014
Struggling Mothercare names ex-Shop Direct boss as interim chief
Mar 10, 2014
LONDON, England - British baby products retailer Mothercare named ex-Shop Direct boss Mark Newton-Jones as its interim chief executive on Monday, giving the group more time to search for a permanent leader to help revive its struggling UK business.
Newton-Jones, who led online retailer Shop Direct for almost a decade until July and has also held senior roles at clothing retailer Next, will join Mothercare on March 17.He succeeds Simon Calver who quit last month after less than two years in the role, weeks after a profit warning showed his plans to revive the group were faltering.
Mothercare, which makes about 70 percent of sales in the UK, has been shutting underperforming British stores and revamping others, growing online and improving products, but the changes have struggled to make a difference in the face of fierce competition from internet rivals and supermarkets.
The firm, which has 231 stores in the UK and around another 1,200 in a better-performing international division, had aimed to make a profit on its British operations by 2015, but said in January that 2016 to 2017 was now more realistic.
Shares in Mothercare, which have fallen 40 percent in three months, were up 0.4 percent to 236.25 pence at 1218 GMT.
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