Position last year: New entry
Andrew skinner coast
2016 was a year of steadying the ship for Coast managing director Andrew Skinner, following a restructure of the business last year. Skinner, who was promoted from merchandising director to managing director in April 2015, was responsible for leading the womenswear business through turbulent waters, including a “significant” reduction in headcount and the closure of several loss-making stores when leases ended last year.
Coast opened its first store featuring a new concept at the Intu Metrocentre in Gateshead in November and returned to profit in the year to 27 February after it renewed its focus on a “more streamlined cost base”.
Pre-tax profits reached £1.3m, up from a loss of £10.8m in 2015, and rumours abound that private equity firms are interested in buying Coast, along with Oasis and Warehouse. Skinner is clearly taking the retailer on the right track.