|Marks & Spencer promotes Dixon after clothing sales crash|
|Tuesday, 10 July 2012 10:51|
Marks & Spencer has announced a raft of senior changes in a bid to reverse sliding sales in its clothing business. Food boss John Dixon (pictured) takes over as executive director for general merchandise from Kate Bostock, who is leaving the company. Dixon is replaced as executive director for food by current retail director Steve Rowe, who will step up to the board on 1 October. Reporting to Dixon, former Debenhams and Jaeger chief executive Belinda Earl is handed the new role of style director. In another new role, Patrick Bousquet-Chavanne - a veteran of nearly 20 years with Estée Lauder - joins M&S in September as corporate director of strategy implementation and business development. He helped develop the M&S YourBeauty concept. The news comes after M&S announced a fall in UK like-for-like sales of 2.8%. The food business formerly headed by Dixon continued to outperform the group, with like-for-likes up 0.6% for the 13 weeks to 30 June. But sales of general merchandise crashed by 6.8% over the period. Total sales were down 0.9% in the UK and down 0.7% across the group as a whole. “Our food business has again performed strongly,” said chief executive Marc Bolland. “General merchandise underperformed in a difficult trading season. We are confident we are taking the necessary steps to address this.” Bolland said he was “pleased with the performance in multi-channel [and] international”, where sales were up 14.9% and 0.9% respectively.