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All change at Warehouse and Principles as McKeon departs

Warehouse and Principles chief operating officer of clothing Mark McKeon is to leave the business at the end of February to become chief executive of Dutch department store chain Vroom & Dreesman.

His departure leaves a gap at the top of Principles and Warehouse. Both retailers became part of Mosaic Fashions last year after it acquired Rubicon Retail.

Mosaic chief executive Derek Lovelock said McKeon’s departure was unexpected, but added that the company would use the opportunity to scrutinise its management structure. “We’re going to look in the market for talent and then come up with an organisational structure that suits the person we select,” he said. “The management at both brands is very strong so there’s no rush.”

Mosaic business development director Meg Luftsman is to look after Warehouse in the interim, while Lovelock will oversee Principles.

Mosaic, which also owns Karen Millen, Whistles, Coast and Oasis, has an executive board overseeing all of the chains. But last year it broke tradition by appointing its first brand director at Oasis, its largest chain. Lovelock said a similar structure was possible for Principles and Warehouse.

“We’ve absolutely got an open mind about it. We’ll look at a number of options, and there might be one or two roles available,” Lovelock said.

McKeon, who has held senior roles at Next and Marks & Spencer, is expected to bump up the fashion credentials of the 60-store Vroom & Dreesman group. He was drafted in by Tony DeNunzio, former Asda chief executive and now chief executive of Maxeda, the Vroom & Dreesman holding company.

McKeon told Drapers that part of his job would be to bolster the chain’s UK concession and shop-in-shop offer. “I am looking forward to the job. It’s a personal decision and one that will stretch me,” he said.

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