Foster will stay for turnaround at Uniqlo

Bernie Foster is to continue as Uniqlo's UK chief operating officer, despite the store closures announced last week.

Foster confirmed to Retail Week this week that she will stay. She was appointed in November and now has the job of returning the business to operating profit by May 2004.

Uniqlo is scaling back operations in the UK drastically, with plans to close 16 of its 21 stores by June. Two stores that never even opened, at Wandsworth in south London and The Potteries at Hanley in Derbyshire, will also be disposed of.

London shops in Regent Street, Wimbledon, Richmond, Brompton Road and Uxbridge will remain open. A small London-based team will help run the business, liaising with the Japanese head office.

When it launched in the UK in September 2001, the retailer planned to have 50 stores by next year.

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