Retailer Michael Hobbs joins as Chairman
court & spark consulting has reinforced our leadership team through the appointment of highly regarded retail player Michael Hobbs who joins as Chairman. Michael has spent over 30 years operating within the retail sector in roles with H&M, Burtons, Laura Ashley, Mountain Warehouse and was CEO of Adams Childrenswear.
In his role as Chairman, court & spark will benefit from Michael’s considerable commercial and business strategy expertise, together with retail industry experience and network to help the business realise further expansion plans. court & spark’s Founders and Joint MD’s Claire Beasley and Pauline Wood are currently driving the business on a growth strategy and in the last twelve months have made key appointments within their E-commerce, Mapping & Research and Main Board Practice areas.
Hobbs’ appointment also marks a return to a more active involvement in the retail sector, following his last retail role as Chairman of Mountain Warehouse in 2007. Having achieved significant success during his nine year tenure at Adams Childrenswear, transforming the mature, single format retailer into a profitable multi brand/multi channel business he stepped down to realise his dream of developing Appassionata, an Italian lifestyle business, incorporating property development, a vineyard and truffle plantation. Even though Michael has maintained his retail sector links through Non-Exec roles and involvement with other commercial ventures, his main focus has been Appassionata. As this business is now in the capable hands of his wife and daughter Michael believes the time is right to increase his presence within the retail industry and his role at court & spark will act as the first in a number of new opportunities.
court & spark’s Joint MD Claire Beasley comments: “Pauline and I are proud to have grown the business to its current scale and we are committed to fuelling further expansion. The appointment of Michael Hobbs as Chairman will help facilitate development of increased capability for court & spark. Michael’s retail sector connections, novel ideas and business strategy expertise will provide Pauline and I with a great sounding board as we make key decisions to grow the business. We wanted someone with a proven track record and fresh perspective to add value to our business expansion and it’s a real coup to appoint Michael as our Chairman.”