Shoe retailer Clarks appoints new CEO
Joining the business on 30 September, Shearwood will be responsible for leading Clarks into a new phase of development and growth, working with the Board of Directors and Executive Management Team to build on the extensive work that has already been conducted in recent months.
Shearwood has a proven track record as a world class leader, having held senior positions at brands such as Aurora Fashions, the business behind Oasis, Coast and Warehouse, where he was CEO between 2009 and 2015, and Mosaic Fashions, owner of seven well known international and high street brands, including Shoe Studio Group, where he was Deputy CEO.
Most recently, Shearwood served as CEO at Karen Millen, the international fashion brand, driving considerable ecommerce initiatives and a successful repositioning exercise. He has also extensive international experience, having led Aurora's stores and concessions across 77 countries and the expansion of Karen Millen into markets across North America, Asia and Europe.
The appointment marks a new era for the retailer, which posted a 65% drop in annual profit last year. The business cut nearly 170 jobs in the UK in February this year as part of a restructuring process and combined its marketing and product functions to streamline its operations
“The Board, Executive Management Team and our staff across the world have progressed admirably during this interim period and we are pleased to have found a new CEO that is resilient and global in his outlook, with values which closely align with those of Clarks. Mike will continue the considerable work undertaken by the business since September and I will help to ensure his smooth transition into Clarks. We all look forward to working with him," said Tom O'Neill, Executive Chairman.
Mike Shearwood added: "I am excited by the opportunity to lead a world class brand with strong heritage and a highly skilled global workforce. I look forward to working with its talented and experienced Board and management team to deliver the next chapter of its development. Clarks has a long heritage and trusted reputation as a shoemaker and I know has a strong future as a continued leader in the market, with a reputation for innovation and design."
The company operates a retail, wholesale, franchise and online business in over 100 markets worldwide.
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