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Jack Wills founder resumes role as chief executive

Jack Wills’ founder and majority shareholder Peter Williams will resume his role as chief executive two years after he stepped aside.

Current chief executive Wendy Becker has decided to leave the business. She joined the preppy young fashion retailer as chief operating officer in 2012 and became chief executive in 2013 to lead the business to an IPO.

However, the group’s board and shareholders have decided not to float “for the time being” following a review. Becker stood down with immediate effect.

“Wendy has been instrumental in building a talented senior operating team and recently steered the group through its sixteenth consecutive year of growth,” said the company in a statement. “The board would like to thank her for her passion and commitment and wish her all the best for the future.” Becker remains a shareholder in the company.

Williams stepped down as chief executive in 2012, but has remained closely involved with the business, which he founded from a small shop in Salcombe, Devon in 1999.

He said: “I am extremely excited about resuming my role as Jack Wills’ chief executive after a two-year break. I would like to thank Wendy for her significant contribution to the business and for putting in place the people and the processes that will enable us to continue our growth.”

Becker said: “I have thoroughly enjoyed my time at Jack Wills and, as a member of the board, fully agree with the decision not to press ahead with an IPO at this moment. I wish Peter and his colleagues every success in building on Jack Wills’ great brand and great heritage.”

In May this year, the company announced a raft of new hires after Drapers revealed that around 15 directors, heads of department and managers had left Jack Wills over the a period of around six to eight months amid concerns over its direction.

@Tara_Hounslea

Readers' comments (4)

  • About time! Hope they get back on the right road now!

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  • It's always the same after expansion-brands lose direction as they want to do more and more turnover. They can lose their niche and core customer as expansion turns them into a "Dads" brand.

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  • "GET BACK TO WHERE YOU ONCE BELONG" good words and a good message!

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  • The brand has gone dull and stale over the last 12 months. My kids have moved onto other brands inspite of being in the target age.

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