Finnish department store retailer Stockmann Group has appointed its interim chief executive officer Lauri Veijalainen to the full-time role.

Veijalainen, who has served as Stockmann's interim CEO since April of this year, joined the company in 2010 as development director for the group's international operations. He has also served as Stockmann's chief financial officer.

"Stockmann is ready to continue the turnaround that is already visible in the group's financial performance," says Jukka Hienonen, chairman of Stockmann's board of directors. "We have two successful and profitable divisions: Lindex and Real Estate. Now we will focus on improving the department store experience and the stores' sales and profitability.

"After a thorough selection process, the board of directors concluded that Lauri Veijalainen has the best qualities for this position. He has versatile experience in the retail and real estate businesses, strong financial knowledge and he has over the past months proven his skills in carrying out major change projects at Stockmann. I am confident that Lauri is the right person to encourage personnel to achieve key goals."

Veijalainen takes the reins after the departure of former CEO, Per Thelin, in April, after just one year in the role.

Stockmann CEO Thelin in immediate departure

"With the trophy retail locations in Finland and the Baltics, a brand that evokes strong emotions, and a new clear focus, Stockmann has all prerequisites to return its department store operations back to profit by 2018," adds Veijalainen.

"We want to further develop Stockmann's department stores and the supporting online store to become a unique shopping destination for fashion, food, beauty, and home decoration. I am eager to take Stockmann further and rapid steps forward and to gain results as a team with my skilled colleagues."

In June, the retailer announced it would appoint a new management team and reduce the number of its employees in Finland as the next step in its turnaround strategy.

Stockmann speeds up turnaround with more job cuts

Additionally, the group's Swedish fashion chain, Lindex, is scaling up its textile reuse and recycling scheme to all stores in Sweden and Norway, with plans to extend the initiative to Finland later this year.

Lindex scales-up textile reuse and recycling scheme