Fashion retailer Hobbs today (12 November) has strengthened its management team with a new director of buying and merchandising after booking a 9% jump in sales in the last nine months.

Helen Williamson joins the company from Ted Baker, and completes the new management team that includes Asos's former global marketing director Clare Dobbie, and Topman's Gracia Amico as director of e-commerce.

The retailer said sales rose to GBP87m (US$138m) in the period from February to October, with sales growth accelerating to nearly 18% in October alone.

Demand has been helped by a re-vamped website, along with a "record performance in ankle boots and dresses for the autumn/winter season.

"We've had a fantastic start to the season, with coats and boots being key drivers as customers seek high quality, contemporary winter styles," said chief executive Nicky Dulieu.

Hobbs, which has over 140 branches in the UK and Ireland as well as franchise stores in the UAE and Sweden, is now looking to grow the business both online and internationally.