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Topshop appoints ex-M&S buying director as fashion head

Topshop has appointed former Marks and Spencer buying director, Gillian Ridley Whittle, as its new fashion director. 

Whittle began her career at Debenhams as head of buyer in 2000, where she moved on to Marks and Spencer after four years, where she began her role as head of buying of womenswear. 

Most recently she was made the director of womenswear, lingerie, footwear and accessories at Target Australia in 2014, where she spent a year at the business. 

Whittle, joins the womenswear brand at the time which sees the business struggling as Topshop and Topman have both reported pre-tax losses of over £505m for the year to September 2018.

This followed a loss of nearly £4m for the previous year. 

Paul Price, CEO of Topshop and Topman said: “We are delighted to welcome Gillian Ridley Whittle to the Topshop Topman leadership team as Topshop’s fashion director. 

“Over the past 20 years, Gillian has established herself as a leader in the international womenswear industry, most recently as group general manager at two of Australia’s largest department stores, having started her career at Debenhams, followed by a decade in womenswear at Marks and Spencer in the UK.”

He added: “Gillian’s appointment is an exciting milestone for the brand. The teams look forward to working with and supporting her in further elevating and strengthening Topshop’s product proposition.”

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