M&S Removes Asia Boss In New Bolland Shake-Up
Marks & Spencer (M&S) has unveiled fresh changes to its senior management ranks as Britain's biggest clothing retailer fights to accelerate a turnaround in its fortunes.
Sky News understands that Pascal Martin, the executive responsible for M&S's 120 stores in Asia, is to leave next month following discussions with Jan Heere, the head of its international operations.
Mr Martin, who has worked at M&S only since 2011, will be replaced by Bruce Findlay, a former retail director for Calvin Klein in Europe and previously of Tommy Hilfiger in Asia-Pacific.
The shake-up is the latest to be sanctioned by Marc Bolland, M&S's chief executive, as he attempts to reverse a run of eight consecutive quarters of declining like-for-like general merchandise sales.
Asia is one of the company's most important growth regions, comprising wholly-owned shops in China and Hong Kong, a joint venture with Reliance Retail in India and franchised operations in countries such as Indonesia, Malaysia, South Korea and Thailand.
In a statement issued to Sky News, an M&S spokeswoman confirmed the changes, saying:
"We can confirm that Pascal Martin is leaving M&S at the end of October to pursue new opportunities outside of the business. We'd like to thank Pascal for his contribution over the last couple of years and wish him well for the future.
"We are pleased to announce the appointment of Bruce Findlay as Regional Director, Asia. Bruce has extensive international retail experience."
M&S does not typically provide sales figures for each market covered by its international division, although it said in May that annual full-year sales had grown by 11.3%, with China and India showing double-digit like-for-like sales growth.
The performance of its stores in China has, however, been disappointing in the context of management's internal targets, Sky News reported last January.