LONDON — Following the appointment of a new chief executive officer last week, Matchesfashion is further fortifying its top management, naming Stuart Hill chief operating officer, WWD has learned.
Hill will join Matchesfashion from Farfetch, where he served as senior vice president of logistics for four years. He will start his new role in September. An announcement is expected on Tuesday.
Hill has 25 years’ experience in senior logistics positions within fashion, retail and logistics businesses.
An entrepreneur, he also founded logistics companies including wnDirect and Lorry Route. He remains chairman of the latter.
During his time at Farfetch, Hill was part of the global leadership team, reporting to the company’s chief operating officer. His role saw him set and define global operational and logistical strategy for the business, and champion key customer experience improvements.
Hill said Matchesfashion has long “challenged luxury retail norms, and pioneered creative retail experiences. I look forward to joining the outstanding team, now led by my former boss and mentor Nick Beighton, and to taking the business’ unique proposition to even more customers across the globe.”
Beighton said that “having worked with Stuart at Asos, I have experienced firsthand the operational impact he can have on a business. Stuart will also bring a valuable entrepreneurial mind-set to Matchesfashion, helping it to remain agile, innovative, and customer centric.
“I am sure we will all benefit from his industry insight and extensive experience in e-commerce, global logistics and retail. I am immensely looking forward to being reunited with Stuart, and starting to work with the exceptional wider team, including our new CFO, Dave Murray,” Beighton said.
As reported last week, Beighton, the former CEO of Asos, is taking the top job at Matchesfashion, and will be the company’s fourth CEO in the space of five years. He will take over from former Printemps CEO Paolo De Cesare, who is leaving the company to pursue other opportunities.
Tom Hall, partner at Apax and member of the board of directors at Matchesfashion, said last week the retailer “is in a fortunate position to be able to attract a CEO of Beighton’s caliber. Nick is a proven operator with phenomenal knowledge of online retail.”
Both appointments come at a time when Apax is looking to accelerate the recovery of Matchesfashion, which has been hit by supply chain issues post-pandemic, and trade friction with Europe in the wake of Brexit.
As reported, Matchesfashion’s numbers began to turn around at the end of last year. Full-price revenues in the fourth quarter of 2021 were up 25 percent compared with 2020, and 41 percent versus 2019.
In the U.S., full-price sales were particularly robust, rising 40 percent in the three months to Dec. 31. Overall growth in the U.S. has been in the high double-digits versus 2020.
The new management will be expected to build on that momentum, and to make even more changes in what has become brutally competitive environment for fashion and luxury e-tailers.