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JD Sports Names Régis Schultz as Its Next CEO

JD Sports Fashion Plc has a new CEO.

The sportswear retailer announced today that it has tapped Régis Schultz to fill its CEO role. JD said in a statement that he is expected to assume control in September when he takes over Kath Smith, who return to her senior independent director on the board role. (Smith assumed the role in the interim after former executive chairman Peter Cowgill left his role in May.)

“JD has consistently proven itself to be one of the most successful operators of multi-brand retail formats in the world. We are committed to going deeper in the international development of our brands applying our experience and executional expertise and further enhancing our market leading multi-channel customer experience. I am very excited to be joining the Group and look forward to working with the team to deliver on the growth opportunities,” Schultz said in a statement.

JD said Schultz brings valuable leadership in retail to the company, and has a track record of “effecting transformational change through digitization, driving multi-channel growth strategies and working across international markets.”

Most recently, Schultz worked for Dubai-based conglomerate Al-Futtaim Group, where he served as president of retail since 2019. According to a statement, its retail division was responsible for launching the Zara, Ikea, Hugo Boss, M&S and Lacoste brands in the regions it operates, which includes the Middle East, Asia and North Africa. Prior to Al-Futtaim Group, Schultz was CEO of France-based city-centre food and fashion retailer Monoprix.  

“The board has taken this opportunity to conduct a truly global search to find the right candidate to lead JD on the next stage in its development. Régis brings exactly the characteristics we were looking for,” Andrew Higginson, non-executive chair of JD, said in a statement. “He is a retailer through and through with experience across all types of retail formats.  He has also delivered transformational change through digitization in a number of his roles. Finally, he has significant international experience which will be very important as he works with myself and our senior team to execute on our growth strategy. We very much look forward to Régis joining us.

Schultz is not the only leadership change JD has made recently. Last month, the company announced Higginson as its new chair, effective July 11. Prior to the announcement, Higginson most recently served as the chair of William Morrison Supermarkets from January 2015 to November 2021, and also served in senior leadership roles at Tesco for roughly 15 years.

What’s more, JD Sports Fashion Plc announced yesterday that it has entered into a deal to sell its Footasylum banner to German asset management firm Aurelius for £37.5 million ($46 million at the current exchange rate).

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