- The womenswear business has put an unconfirmed number of roles under review
- Group stores director Rose Foster and brand director Amanda Lester are also leaving the business
Jacques Vert Group is making a number of “headcount reductions” across its operations in London and the northeast in a bid to ensure its continued profitability, Drapers has learned.
The womenswear business would not disclose how many roles are affected, but Drapers understands from one source that it amounts to 30, out of a total of around 80 jobs. A consultation process is expected to complete within the next three weeks.
The headcount reductions are being made as part of the second phase of JVG’s three-year transformation plan, which began in early 2015. The first phase saw it merge the marketing and ecommerce teams, leading to the departure of group marketing director Mark Aldridge.
The turnaround is now being led by Shaun Wills, who joined as chief financial officer in April 2015 and was promoted to chief executive this week, replacing Tim Davies who will leave later this month.
It has also emerged that group stores director Rose Foster and brand director Amanda Lester are leaving the business.
Foster, who joined JVG in March 2014, has made a “lifestyle decision” to step down from her role, the company said. She will support the transition to a new structure on a part-time basis.
Lester has worked at JVG for 11 years, joining as brand director for Precis in 2005 and taking on her current role - overseeing Jacques Vert, Precis, Windsmoor and Kaliko - in January 2015. She is leaving to pursue alternative career opportunities.
As previously reported, the company has appointed two new brand directors for Jacques Vert and Precis Petite: Andrea Hickman and Julia Darlington, respectively.
A statement from JVG said: “The first part of the plan is now complete, the business has been stabilised, reversing five years of declining profitability and has recently been returned to positive underlying EBITDA.
“The second phase of the plan has now begun with a greater focus on growth through the development of the brands and the creation of distinct and individual brand personalities.
“In addition, and as part of this phase, the Jacques Vert Group will also implement an accelerated ecommerce plan designed to deliver a step change in capability, this will both complement the brand work and establish a stronger footprint online.”
It added: “We have reviewed the organisation both in London and the North East, to ensure we focus on the brands, regrettably and in addition to the changes above we are proposing some headcount reductions to ensure the continued profitability of our business.”
JVG’s turnover fell 4.4% to £175.6m for the year to January 31 2015, compared with the year before.
However, it reduced its underlying EBITDA loss from £7.1m for the year to January 2014 to £5.7m last year, while its operating loss before exceptional items narrowed from £12.4m to £10.7m. It has predicted a return to profitability by the end of this financial year.