Menswear group Moss Bros has appointed former Musto retail director Paul Rooke as retail operations director.
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Rooke joined Moss Bros on February 21, having spent the previous three years at sports brand Musto. Before that he worked at companies including Blair Accessories, Solid Clothing and Style Holdings, and has also done stints as both a retail and recruitment consultant.
As part of his new role Rooke will be in charge of overseeing all the group’s stores including the Cecil Gee, Moss, Moss Bespoke and Savoy Taylor’s Guild shops. Rooke’s role will also incorporate personnel responsibilities for the group.
Moss Bros chief executive Brian Brick said Rooke’s skills are exactly what the company needed to help deliver strategy. “I have known him for a long time and I thought he was the right guy for the job,” said Brick.
Brick said that because Moss Bros’s 15 Hugo Boss franchised stores had been sold back to Hugo Boss UK, the retail operations role at Moss Bros had been rejigged and the position, which had previously been covered by a variety of people, would now be covered solely be Rooke.
In February Moss Bros revealed the Hugo Boss transaction, which was valued at £16.5m, and the deal is due for completion on April 1.
The cash raised from the deal will be used to invest in service in stores and the piloting and potential roll-out of initiatives such as Moss Bespoke and the development of its hire business.
Also, as part of a rebranding, a new look Moss store will be opened in May that will incorporate all the elements of the retailer’s offer.
Brick said that the Hugo Boss sale was in line with Moss Bros’s strategy of focusing on growing its own brands. The transaction will give Moss Bros the opportunity to invest in those brands.
Last month, Moss Bros reported that like-for-like sales were up 7% in the 26 weeks to January 29.