Boohoo names JD’s former Director as Debenhams CEO

By Becky Bargh 26-Jan-2022

After a decade at Peter Cowgill’s sports fashion group, Daniel Finley has taken the top job at Britain’s high street stalwart

A former Debenhams high street store, UK

Boohoo has named JD’s former Channel Director for the top job of British high street heritage chain Debenhams.

Daniel Finley – who formerly served as Business Development Director at fashion group Peacocks – has taken up the role from this month, and will lead the department store chain through its period of transition.

In a LinkedIn post, he wrote: “After an incredible decade as Group Multi Channel Director at JD Sports Fashion plc, I decided it was time to take up a new challenge.

“Today, I am excited to have started my new role as Chief Executive of Debenhams, following its acquisition last year by Boohoo Group.

“I am delighted to take charge of a great British heritage brand and looking forward to building on the progress that the team have made since its acquisition.”

The announcement comes almost a year to the day since Boohoo bought out the beleaguered beauty retailer for £55m, turning the business into a primarily online destination.

Pressure from beauty brands, however, forced the fast-fashion giant to rethink its strict online-only rule and conceded in opening a single beauty store for shoppers in Manchester, UK.

A post on LinkedIn at the time read: “Boohoo Group PLC don’t do shops… Until now. Well, until soon. See you in Manchester for make-up and stuff.”

Alongside the quiet period of adjustment, Debenhams also revived its Beauty Club rewards scheme for beauty products bought online in October last year.

In spite of its turbulent past, beauty shoppers have remained loyal to the British stalwart, and it was cited as the UK’s favourite beauty buying destination.

Debenhams’ owner named the company as Britain’s second biggest seller of skin care products and the retailer with the largest market share in make-up.

Boohoo, meanwhile, has big plans for the company’s online platform.

Powered by major SaaS provider Mirakl, the new site is said to be nimble and will “stay ahead of the demands of the current digital-first world of commerce,” Boohoo’s Chief Information Officer, Jo Graham, said.

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Meanwhile, Debenhams’ “iconic” heritage will remain intact, the group said.

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