Fashion leaders Marchant and Gold honoured at Retail Week Awards
Primark CEO Paul Marchant and Ann Summers CEO Jacqueline Gold received two of the top honours at the annual Retail Week Awards last night in a ceremony that demonstrated how the retail industry is "striving to be more meaningful" to its community and customers.
Marchant received The Clarity Retail Leader of the Year with Primark hailed as "the pride of British retail" and its CEO recognised for his passion for the retail industry. Gold received the Activist of the Year Award for her work with the government in championing gender equality, small businesses and for being "a hugely vocal and inspirational advocate for women in business".
John Lewis & Partners scooped DWF The PwC Best New Store for its experience-focused opening at Westfield White City in west London, while pop-up shopping mall Boxpark landed Retail Destination and The Hut Group picked up the award for International Growth Retailer.
Other big winners at the ceremony, which is sponsored by Salesforce and which took place in front of 1,300 retail executives at Grosvenor House in London, include The Co-op, Aldi, The Entertainer and jeweller Beaverbrooks.
Retail Week executive editor George MacDonald said: “There was a renewed sense of purpose among this year’s winners about what the sector should be doing for the community and for its customers and that is what set them apart: they are all aspiring to be more meaningful, they are striving for good.
“It’s no secret that it has been a challenging year for the retail industry, which makes the incredibly high standard of nominees and winners at this year’s awards even more impressive."
Gold's award came as the Government published a review this morning rebuking nearly 70 FTSE 350 companies who only one woman (or in some cases no women) on their board. Among those singled out was sportswear retailers JD Sports.
The Investment Association, a trade body, and the Government-backed Hampton-Alexander review have written to 69 companies on the FTSE 350 index about the poor representation of women in the board room. The letter calls on the companies to meet the review’s target of having 33% of women on their board and leadership team by 2020 and asks what steps they are taking to meet the goal.