Jul 26, 2018
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Shop Direct reshuffles executive board, names new retail director

Jul 26, 2018

Shop Direct, the owner of online fashion retailers including Very.co.uk and Littlewoods, has announced changes to its executive board to be more customer-centric.


Sam Perkins, formerly group product director, has been named as group retail director, overseeing both the retail and product teams and leading a new combined function.

Jon Rudoe, group retail, technology and data director, will step down from his role, while a new permanent chief technology officer will be recruited to sit on the executive board.

“Reshaping our executive board in this way is a big and important change for Shop Direct and reflects how serious we are about building a truly customer-centric digital business in order to create a winning customer experience,” said CEO Henry Birch in a statement.

“Bringing together our product and retail teams will drive improved collaboration, which in turn will enable us to start to change the way we buy and sell products. This will have significant benefits for our customers, helping us to serve them better by developing a clearer, more joined-up understanding of their needs. I’m confident that Sam Perkins brings the strategic focus, commercial know-how and leadership skills to drive forward this important new function.”

The company is hoping to hire a “heavy-hitting chief technology officer” to ensure the business remains ahead of the curve when it comes to technological developments. Technology has played an important role in Shop Direct since it transitioned from being a catalogue retailer to a digital pureplay.

Technology, data intelligence and customer-centricity have become key in Shop Direct’s recent success, driving a 3.7% increase in revenue to £1.9billion in financial year 2016/2017.

“Simplifying an organisation like Shop Direct, with the legacy processes and ways of working that come with 85 years of history, isn’t a straightforward task. But aligning the way we work to the way our customers shop will be a critical enabler in us staying ahead. I have no doubt that we have the talent, both at executive board level and throughout the business, to do just that,” said Birch.

Until a new CTO is appointed, JM Domaingue will act as interim CTO and report to group CEO Henry Birch.

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