Esprit, the global apparel and lifestyle retailer, today announced the appointment of Jose Manuel Martínez Gutiérrez as its new Group Chief Executive Officer and Executive Director. Mr. Martínez has previously held various senior positions at Inditex, having most recently held the position of Group Director of Distribution and Operations. Inditex owns the fast-growing fashion brand Zara.
“We are delighted that Mr. Martínez, a professional with a wealth of experience in global retailing, has joined Esprit as our new Group Chief Executive Officer, and the successor to Mr. Ronald Van Der Vis," said Raymond Or, Non-Executive Chairman of Esprit. "Mr. Martínez has a track record of outstanding leadership that will be critical to executing Esprit's transformation plan. “
Esprit is right now going through a major $2.3 billion restructuring initiative. The company’s retail sales and supply chain response have been languishing for some time. The company has seen one set back after another~ to cut losses, many flagship stores were closed across the world, in June 2011net profits declined by 98% to stand at $10 million and for the company admitted that the group has ‘lost its soul’.
The exit of last CEO Mr Van Dar Vis was dramatic, because he said that his family was unwilling to relocate to Germany, where the group has its headquarters. Within 24 hours, the chairman Hans Joachim Korber also resigned.
The company is banking on Mr Martinez’s skills to revive its flagging fortunes and revitalize the supply chain. Experts have responded positively at the development.
The Hong-Kong listed company’s stocks jumped 38% when the news hit the market. It is the company’s biggest jump in the last 14 years.