A FORMER director of La Senza, the lingerie chain that collapsed into administration earlier this year, is to tackle the turnaround of struggling retailer JJB Sports.
Beverley Williams, who takes on the chief executive’s role vacated by Keith Jones last Friday, will work alongside US retail recovery specialist and chairman-designate Bob Corliss as they look to revive the fortunes of the sporting goods group.
JJB has been struggling in the face of weak consumer confidence, supply troubles and stiff competition from Sports Direct, which – with its bustling out-of-town and high street stores – appears to have cornered the sports clothing market.
The firm has closed underperforming outlets and is targeting keen amateurs and sporting families with better stores and new and improved product ranges.
However, it recently posted an 8.7 per cent slide in like-for-like sales as poor weather and weak demand for replica kits resulted in a disappointing Euro 2012 tournament.
Williams, who will hold the chief executive’s role on an interim basis, was commercial director and co-chief executive of La Senza but left last year before its move into administration in January. She was previously general manager of Contessa, which merged with La Senza in 2007.
Corliss, who previously ran franchise-based footwear business the Athlete’s Foot, said: ”Beverley brings a wealth of experience in multi-channel retailing, which forms a core part of the JJB
“She is particularly well known for her expertise in product and trading. I am looking forward to working with Beverley as we set about improving the overall experience for JJB customers.”