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John Lewis seeks fashion director

John Lewis is on the hunt for a new buying director for fashion after Peter Ruis was promoted to the board of the premium department store chain last week.

Ruis, who will take up the position of buying and brand director on August 2, said a formal search had yet to begin but that the department store hoped to announce his successor before the end of the year.

Ruis’s new position sees him take over responsibility for buying across all categories, including electricals and homeware, as well as overseeing marketing and store development. He will retain overall responsibility for fashion.

Ruis, who has led the fashion department since 2007, stressed: “I will be very hands-on in terms of driving the assortment.

“Historically, board-level roles are further away from the day-to-day business but I will be as close to fashion as I am now,” he added.

Ruis was previously menswear buying director for the business before taking over the overarching fashion role three years ago as part of a restructure.

He has been single-handedly credited with dragging John Lewis’s fashion offer into the 21st century, critically persuading a raft of contemporary and premium brands to supply the department store.

John Lewis also confirmed that merchandise director Jill Little was stepping down from her role. Little, who has been with the business for 33 years, is moving to the role of strategy director before retiring next March.

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