Debenhams parent Celine boosts its board

Debenhams

Debenhams parent group Celine Jersey Topco has appointed Dr Beatrice Lafon to its board as non-executive director.

Dr Lafon has held a number of senior roles in a wide variety of retail and turnaround situations and was most recently interim CEO of French fashion retailer Pimkie.

Debenhams
Dr Beatrice Lafon

She spent five years at Claire’s Stores Inc, the leading global accessories and jewellery retailer, taking the role of CEO from 2014 to 2016. She is currently a NED at Solent Group (a multi-category design and distribution business) and at Orsay (a European womenswear retailer trading across 30 countries).

Mark Gifford, Chairman of Celine Jersey Topco Limited, said: “I am so pleased that Beatrice has agreed to join our board. Her variety of experience and track record of turnaround expertise brings another dimension to the Group. We continue to strengthen the board to support Stefaan [Vansteenkiste, Debenhams CEO] and the operational team with wide-ranging skills and knowledge and strategic perspective.

“Having made good progress in our restructuring plans and with our supportive investor group and access to substantial funding, Debenhams is well set to implement a turnaround.”

Celine Jersey Topco is a consortium of investors which acquired Debenhams out of administration last year.

Debenhams has closed 19 stores during January as part of its planned restructuring with further stores expected to close next year.