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November 2, 2018

Debenhams retail managing director to depart

Struggling British department store group Debenhams has confirmed the departure of Ross Clemmow, managing director for retail, digital, food and events, in the New Year.

By Beth Wright

Struggling British department store group Debenhams has confirmed the departure of Ross Clemmow, managing director for retail, digital, food and events, in the New Year.

Clemmow has been with Debenhams for more than five years and has been in his current role since October of last year.

In a statement sent to just-style, Debenhams said Clemmow is leaving to take up a new position as managing director of international private equity group Bridgepoint.

The news comes a week after the department store group announced it is to close up to 50 stores – nearly one-third of its store base – putting around 4,000 jobs at risk amid record annual losses.

The company, which operates around 165 stores, revealed a GBP491.5m (US$634.3m) pre-tax loss, against profits of GBP59m the year before. 

The news, analysts say, is a stark indication of how much the high street is floundering, and that just a few years ago it would have been unthinkable that retailers were planning on cutting staff levels ahead of Christmas. 

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