Debenhams has appointed Stefaan Vansteenkiste as chief executive while chairman Terry Duddy will step down from the board in September.
Vansteenkiste joined the ailing retailer in April as chief restructuring officer, and is a turnaround expert at professional services firm Alvarez & Marsal.
Vansteenkiste added: “The retail industry faces a challenging environment and everyone at Debenhams acknowledges that. But we have a clear plan and Debenhams has a great team of people who are committed to delivering it. I am very excited about Debenhams’ strong prospects and with a restructured balance sheet there is a robust platform from which to build a turnaround, based on Debenhams’ clear brand focus, broad customer reach and differentiated product offer.”
Duddy said: “The board welcomes Stefaan’s appointment as CEO. We concluded that he is the right person to take the business forward into the next phase of its recovery. Stefaan has already made a strong contribution since joining Debenhams, and has the support of our investor consortium to drive forward our turnaround plan.”