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David Reiss

Managing director, Reiss

Like its rival Ted Baker, the August launch of Reiss’s sub-brand 1971 Reiss was a highlight for the premium retailer. When the younger, denim-led sub-brand hit stores in August, it was met with positive reviews. It has hit sales targets throughout autumn and now represents 20% of total sales, according to the retailer. A new shopfit with a less formal design to reflect the design aesthetic of 1971 Reiss was launched last month at Liverpool One shopping centre.

David Reiss has also improved back-office operations at his eponymous chain, putting a stronger emphasis on marketing and has made a raft of new appointments, including former Selfridges head of contemporary buying for womenswear, Lina Basma, into the new role of head of buying. Reiss himself has remained one of the industry’s most product-passionate chief executives throughout 2009.

The success of these initiatives were reflected in Reiss’s latest figures, with sales up 21% to £81m during the year to January 31, 2009, although EBITDA fell from £11.9m to £8.5m.

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