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Shepherdson to tour Whistles

Jane Shepherdson will take a whirlwind tour of all the shops in the Whistles chain to help her decide how best to return the niche business to its roots.
Ex-Topshop brand director Shepherdson, who completed a management buy-in of Whistles from Mosaic Fashions this week, told Drapers she would “draw on the brand’s heritage” as its new chief executive.

“My first priority is to meet all the wonderful people [at Whistles], to see the product and to visit every store,” she said.

Shepherdson said it was too early to give specific details about her plans.

Lucille Lewin, who founded Whistles in the 1970s with a mix of bought-in designer brands and own-label product, said that Shepherdson would be good for the brand. “She knows what is wrong with the high street,” Lewin said.

She added: “Whistles is a great brand but we never considered ourselves high street when we started. I would take it back to that concept. Whistles isn’t about following trends – it makes up its own stories.”

Mosaic Fashions’ owner Baugur will retain an interest in Whistles. Shepherdson and her team, which includes her former Topshop colleagues Keith Wilks and Jo Farrelly, are understood to have taken a significant stake in the business.

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