New Zealand-based outdoor apparel firm Icebreaker has appointed Rob Fyfe as executive chairman, replacing Noel Todd who has stepped down after 18 years in the post.

Fyfe, who joined the company as a director last year, will have an active day-to-day role working in the business on various strategic projects when he starts his new position in September.

"The chairman's role is critical and works very closely with the CEO to steer the ship and set the priorities and objectives of the business for the future. I can think of no one better than Rob to be able to do this, given his wealth of experience."

Fyfe previously served as chief executive officer at airline group Air New Zealand.

The news comes after Icebreaker appointed Cathy Quain as its first global vice president of retail last month.