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Drapers 30 Under 30 2019: Joel Edmondson, business development, Marks & Spencer

Age: 26 

Joel edmondson

Over the past 12 months, Marks & Spencer’s Joel Edmondson has grown Try Tuesday – the retailer’s digital styling service – fivefold. The initiative offers customers free online personal styling advice and now has more than a quarter of a million users.

“Joel has taken over our Try Tuesday programme, and driven it to incredible growth and prominence within M&S,” says the retailer’s director of digital, Vic Self. “He has a strategic mind and is able to get things done in a complex retail environment.”

Edmondson was bitten by the retail bug when he started working on the shop floor at Argos in 2008 to earn some extra money while studying at college. After graduating from the University of Oxford in 2013, he joined consultancy firm McKinsey & Co.

A move to M&S followed in 2015. Edmondson worked alongside executive director of general merchandise Steve Rowe, who became chief executive in April 2016. Following Rowe’s promotion to the top job, Edmondson worked hand in hand with business leaders, including former clothing boss Jo Jenkins, on the retailer’s turnaround strategy.

Fascinated by clothing and itching to flex his digital skills, he took over Try Tuesday in 2017.

“Joel will become one of the retail leaders of the future,” Self adds. “He has a great mix of curiosity, intellect and vision.”

Edmondson cites former Burberry boss Angela Ahrendts, now senior vice-president of Apple, as his inspiration, alongside Boohoo Group founders Carol Kane and Mahmud Kamani.

Joel Edmondson’s CV

2017 Business development, Marks & Spencer

2015 Clothing and home strategy lead, Marks & Spencer

2015 Associate, McKinsey & Co

2013 Business analyst, McKinsey & Co

2008 Sales assistant, Argos

 

 

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