• New responsibilities among executive directors
  • Operating committee created
  • Digital director David Walmsley among those leaving

Marks & Spencer has restructured responsibilities among its senior team and created a new, smaller operating committee as it seeks to focus better on customers.

The changes made by new M&S chief executive Steve Rowe mean that some members of its old 20-strong management board depart the business.

They include digital director David Walmsley, kidswear and home director Stephanie Chen and international director Costas Antimissaris.

Store environment and product presentation director Florence De Boosere and Middle East regional director Mark Koprowski will also leave.

Style director Belinda Earl is one prominent member of the old management board that will not be a member of the new operating committee.

At the executive director level, Patrick Bousquet-Chavanne becomes executive director of customer, marketing and Marksandspencer.com. He was formerly marketing and international director but the international business will now report to Rowe.

Chief finance officer Helen Weir now also assumes responsibility for strategy implementation.

There will be an update on the responsibilities of multichannel director Laura Wade-Gery after she comes back from maternity leave in September.

The new operating committee will be “accountable for the day-to-day running of the business as well as for the development and execution of strategy”.

The committee will comprise the executive directors along with director of food Andy Adcock, director of womenswear, lingerie and beauty Jo Jenkins, director of retail Sacha Berendji, international director Paul Friston, communications and investor relations director Dominic Fry, human resources boss Simmone Haywood and group secretary and head of corporate governance Amanda Mellor.

Rowe said: “On my first day as CEO, I committed to putting M&S customers at the heart of everything we do.

“These changes reflect this – a simpler management structure with a smaller, more focused team running M&S will lead to more efficient decision-making and move us closer to our customers.

“The new operating committee will be working together to improve M&S, starting with fixing our clothing and home offer for our customers, our employees and our shareholders.”