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House of Fraser chairman exits

House of Fraser chairman Frank Slevin has left the business, Drapers understands.

His departure comes after Sports Direct bought the department store chain out of administration last week for £90m.

Drapers understands that Alex Williamson, chief executive of HoF, and the rest of the senior management team currently remain in place.

Slevin joined the firm in February 2015, when chief operating officer Nigel Oddy became chief executive, replacing John King.

Slevin left HSBC in Hong Kong in 2011 after 16 years with the bank to set up his own advisory firm.

On Friday, as HoF entered administration, he said: “This has been an extraordinarily challenging six months in which the business has delivered so many critical elements of the turnaround plan. Despite the very recent termination of the transaction between Cenbest and C.Banner, I am confident House of Fraser is close to securing its future.”

HoF entered administration after Chinese retail group C Banner called off its plans to invest £70m in the 169-year-old department store chain.

In addition to his role as chairman of HoF, Slevin is chairman of US gadget retailer Brookstone which was also acquired by Sanpower in 2014; chairman of toy retailer Hamley’s, which is owned by C Banner, a strategic partner of Sanpower that is run by Sanpower chairman Yuan Yafei’s brother-in-law Chen Yixi. 

Brookstone filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in the US earlier this month and announced it will close its 101 stores that are located in shopping centres, to focus solely on airport locations and online.

Drapers has contacted Sports Direct for comment.

Readers' comments (2)

  • Seems everything he touches turns to crap

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  • Another corporate failure. No doubt somebody else will employ him.

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