“Debenhams is an institution with almost 100% brand recognition in the UK, but it’s also a start-up due to its transition to digital.”
Why Debenhams? What makes it different?
We’re an iconic British heritage brand. We are passionate about tradition; Debenhams plays a small part in the moments that matter in people’s lives. We’ve done so for more than 200 years, and this is set to continue. Now, we’re going through a digital transformation which means there is opportunity to shape how that business serves future generations of customers. It’s exciting to think that we will do that digitally for 200 more years.
What led you here, and what keeps you here?
I was looking for a new challenge and found myself amazed by the love and affection people have for the Debenhams brand. There is so much demand for a digital department store shopping experience, and I have a history of rapidly scaling and expanding many businesses, so Debenhams seemed like the perfect fit. There is so much opportunity for Debenhams to be the leader in that digital department store space, and that’s down to us having more than 200 years of history with the energy of a start-up. This is our next chapter – we’re a start-up with heritage, which is rare.
What’s your vision, strategy and leadership style?
My vision and ambition are to be the great British digital department store globally. Debenhams will not only be the consumer destination of choice but a partner of choice and a community that brings together brands, partners and customers. We’ve received significant investment, and we’re going to work with great brands to deliver a premium shopping experience that delights our ever-growing customer base. My leadership style can be summed up as visionary, ambitious, relentless and competitive. For the people that work with me, this means they get to come on an incredible journey full of opportunities to be the best at what they do. Better still, they get to do that in an environment and business that will be the best at what it does.
Why should top talent join us? What’s in it for them?
This is one of those once-in-a-lifetime opportunities to re-establish a great British heritage brand in the digital space. Debenhams is an institution with almost 100% brand recognition in the UK, but it’s also a start-up due to its transition to digital. People who join my team, and the Debenhams brand, will play a major part in taking a much-loved high street staple and transforming it ready for a digital future. They get to be disruptors, try new things and create a new digital department store alongside a senior team with a tremendous track record of success. If you’re passionate about doing great things and playing a big part in the future of the digital department store, do it for a brand that everyone knows and accelerate your career in the process.