Bonmarche appoints new CEO

The board of Bonmarché has announced the appointment of Helen Connolly as the company's new chief executive officer.

Wednesday, 30th March 2016, 9:33 am
Updated Wednesday, 30th March 2016, 1:06 pm
Helen Connolly

She will take up her position later in the year - the company said that a further announcement will be made at the relevant time.

Ms Connolly is currently senior buying director for George at ASDA, where she is responsible for all women’s clothing, non-clothing and male and female essentials.

Previously, she was category director for buying and design, and buying manager of Womenswear at George at ASDA.

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She was formerly head of sourcing for Womenswear and Girlswear from China, Thailand, India and Sri Lanka at Next and has also worked within Arcadia Group as head of buying at Dorothy Perkins.

In a statement, Bonmarche said: “Helen brings significant relevant experience from the value retail sector, with particular expertise in women’s apparel, which is Bonmarché’s core market.”

John Coleman, the chairman of Bonmarché Holdings, said: “We are delighted to be appointing someone of Helen’s calibre and experience to Bonmarché. With a strong track record in delivering exceptional results, Helen is an ambitious, talented and passionate individual who will make an outstanding leader for the business.

“Helen’s expertise in buying, merchandising, sourcing, product, and business development is first-class, and she has demonstrated a dedicated focus on delivering a high quality consumer experience. We look forward to welcoming her to Bonmarché and working with her to deliver further progress for the brand and the company.”

Last December, shares in Bonmarche plunged after it issued a profits warning and announced that respected chief executive Beth Butterwick was stepping down to take the top job at Karen Millen.

Ms Butterwick is credited with transforming Bonmarche from a company in administration to a popular over 50s fashion retailer.

Appointed in 2011, she led the company’s new business strategy which focused on providing mature women with fashionable clothing that was age appropriate.