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Martin Lacey to leave Cruise

Martin Lacey, the buying director of designer mini-chain Cruise, is to leave the business.

Lacey has been at Cruise for four years and stayed with the business through its turbulent administration last year.

Lacey has garnered industry wide respect for his role in spearheading Cruise’s branded offer and the retailer’s success in the designer market, prior to the administration.

He will leave Cruise this summer after concluding the autumn 10 buying season. It is not clear what his next role will be.

Cruise collapsed into administration in May 2009 after hitting financial difficulties following the Icelandic banking crisis and over expanding its retail presence.

The business was immediately acquired in a pre-pack by a newly formed company led by the management team, managing director John Heath, and Cruise finance director Iain Baird. Both Heath and Baird announced they were leaving the retailer six months later.

The new chief executive of Cruise Clothing James Pow said: “Martin was part of the management team which helped the business through a difficult time last year and he leaves at a time when Cruise is once again on a secure financial footing and with exciting opportunities ahead.”

Martin Lacey added: “I’ve thoroughly enjoyed my time at Cruise and am pleased the business is in great shape for the future. James and the rest of the management team have exciting plans for the brand and I am sure they will be successful.”

The retailer, which was backed by Icelandic investment fund Kcaj, hit financial difficulties at the end of 2008 after over-expanding. As a result of the Icelandic banking crisis, Kcaj was unable to inject the funding for expansion, putting the retailer under significant strain.


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