Steven Cook

LONDON — Debenhams has appointed Steven Cook as its new managing director, for fashion and home, to lead the buying, merchandising and design divisions across the two categories.

Cook, who previously served as the chief merchant of Canada’s Holt Renfrew and also held fashion and retail positions at the likes of Badgley Mischka, Nike, J. Crew and Polo Ralph Lauren, will take up the position in early January and will report to the company’s chief executive officer Sergio Bucher.

His appointment comes at a time when the retailer is spearheading a new strategy called “Redesigned,” which aims to put the focus on mobile and customer service, as well as structure the retailer’s activities around three units: fashion and home; food and events, and beauty and beauty services.

“Steven’s appointment comes following a comprehensive global search to find the right candidate to drive Debenhams’ product offer forward. Steven brings great credentials to the role and by organising under three business units, our Managing Directors will have more visibility and accountability for delivering the customer experience,” Bucher said.

Cook added that he aims to drive the Debenhams Redesigned strategy by focusing both on product development and on improving the retail experience.

He will work alongside Richard Cristofoli, the company’s former marketing director who has taken on the role of managing director of beauty, beauty services and marketing. Debenhams’ retail director, Ross Clemmow will broaden his role as managing director of the company’s third division, which will oversee retail, digital, food and events.