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79. Johnnie Boden, founder of Boden

Johnnie Boden

Position last year: 79

It’s been a busy year for Johnnie Boden, after his company entered the year on the back of profits up 31% to £32m and a sales rise of 1% to £280.7m in the year to December 31 2014. With fortunes on the rise, the founder unveiled the business’s “New British” rebrand in July, repositioning Boden as a fashion-focused label.

A month earlier, Boden modernised its approach with the introduction of a digitally shoppable catalogue app, which already accounts for 2% of online orders. While ecommerce represents 98% of Boden’s sales, 50% of traffic is still driven by the six million catalogues sent out globally each month.

2015 also saw the leader make high profile additions to the team, with the appointment of Burberry senior manager of business intelligence data, Ana Machado da Silva, as head of ecommerce, and former American Eagle vice-president and general merchandise manager Matthew Hilgeman as product director in June.

All eyes are on 2016, which will mark Boden’s bravest move: the start of a bricks-and-mortar retail rollout for both the UK and US, where he sees potential for 30 and 150 stores, respectively.

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