House of Fraser has appointed current chief operating officer Nigel Oddy as its new chief executive, replacing John King, who is stepping down after eight years in the role.
Oddy worked at Marks & Spencer from 1978 to 2001 in a variety of senior positions, including retail, buying and merchandising, as well as setting up the sourcing office and running the retailer’s operation in Hong Kong.
He joined House of Fraser in 2007 as director of home and hospitality and was appointed chief operating officer in January 2013, also taking responsibility for the company’s international operations.
He will take on his new role with immediate effect, while King will take up a position as a non-executive director on the House of Fraser board.
King said: “I am extremely pleased with everything we have achieved as a team, evidenced by our record Christmas trading period and strong performance in January. House of Fraser is now a much stronger business and is well positioned to enter the next exciting stage of its development as we look to build the brand internationally.
“I believe now is the right time to hand over the reins to Nigel, with whom I have worked closely over the last eight years. Nigel is the right person to lead House of Fraser into its next phase of growth.”
Oddy added: “It is a real privilege to be appointed to lead such a strong multichannel business and team of people. I look forward to building on John’s strategy to drive international expansion and continue our investment in our stores, brands and our multichannel offering.
“We have already agreed locations to expand the brand in China, with three stores due to open over the next two years, and plan to open further new stores in the Middle East with our franchise partner Retail Arabia. In addition, we will continue to focus on our strategic pillars to enhance our premium department store positioning.”
Oddy also spent 23 years working at Marks & Spencer from 1978 until 2001 in a variety of senior positions.
The move comes as part of wider changes at House of Fraser’s management team.
Frank Slevin has been appointed as executive chairman House of Fraser Group. Slevin left HSBC in Hong Kong in 2011 after 16 years with the bank to set up his own advisory firm.
Peter Gross has been promoted from executive director of retail operations to chief operating officer. Andy Harding will move from executive director of Multichannel to chief customer officer. Jackie Hay, executive director of menswear and kidswear, has been appointed to executive director of apparel and accessories.
Ray Kavanagh, director of finance has been moved to the role of executive director of commercial. Ysanne Jenkins, executive director of Home and Food will move to executive director of home, beauty and food. Tony Carr, director of logistics has been promoted to executive director of international development and logistics.