Asos director James Hart has stepped down after 14 years with the UK online clothing retailer.

Hart, who was one of the company's first employees in 1999, will leave the business later this year. Asos said he will spend time developing his new family home while considering his next professional move.

CEO Nick Robertson said: "From day one - and it literally was day one - James has consistently embodied the Asos spirit with his enthusiasm for the ‘next thing', ideas-driven approach and never-ending focus on what's best for the business, always delivering it with our brand at the heart."

During his tenure at Asos, Hart was responsible for the launch of the Asos Marketplace as a platform in its own right, as well as several other customer-facing initiatives.

Asos last week said it expects to post a higher than expected full-year pre-tax profit after another sales surge in the fourth quarter of the fiscal year, where retail sales jumped 47% to GBP208m (US$332.6m).