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Next generation takes over as M&Co sales and profits rise

Chief executive and chairman of value chain M&Co Iain McGeoch has retired after 50 years at the retailer.

His son, Andy McGeoch, who has worked at M&Co since 2004 as marketing and business development director, will step up as chief executive. 

Former BHS and Burton manager Steve Knott has been appointed as chairman.

Knott started his career in retail as a graduate trainee with BHS in1976 before spending 10 years in retail management with the Burton Group. He then joined HMV.

Iain McGeoch’s other son, Neil, also joined the board as property director. Drapers has also learned that Shop Direct’s group merchandising director, Pauline Lauder, has joined M&Co as ecommerce and marketing director, head hunters Flint Hyde made the placement.

The firm said Iain McGeoch will continue to take a “very active role” in a non-executive capacity and chairs the group board.

The news comes as the 280 store business reports that gross profit for the year to February 20 was up 1% to 20.4%. EBITDA for the year was £6m. Total sales were up 1.3% year on year. The company did not break down figures.

Andy McGeoch said: “We are pleased to report an increase in turnover both on a total and like-for-like basis, with gross profit margins also improved. This was despite a more challenging autumn half where, in common with our competitors, we were wrongfooted by some unseasonably warm weather in September and October, resulting in a general discount environment on the high street in the run-up to Christmas.

“In the current financial year, our first-half results show an encouraging 90% year-on-year growth in operating profit together with both increased sales and gross margin. This represents our best opening half in the last five years.”

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