As John Lewis faces some of the biggest challenges in more than a century of trading, it has called in not a department store executive but a restructuring specialist to take the helm.
Joining from the Co-op as executive director for John Lewis, Pippa Wicks is experienced in mutually owned businesses while also bringing a savvy eye from her experience in turnarounds.
John Lewis may not be confronting the existential crisis the Co-op was when she joined, in the aftermath of the ‘Crystal Methodist’ scandal that almost brought the whole food-to-funerals group down.
However, as the retail landscape shifts to reflect new realities such as ensuring the continued relevance of department stores and rebuilding after the impact of the coronavirus pandemic, John Lewis faces a time of difficult change that Wicks’ skills should help it navigate.
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