Managing Director – eCommerce

Northern England
£100-125,000 plus equity participation & Exec Package

This is an outstanding opportunity to join an impressive, privately owned and still market leading eCommerce-led, multi-channel retailers. Having trail-blazed from inception, the business remains one of the strongest names in UK branded eCommerce and still sees an increasingly exponential growth curve as they embrace new products, channels and innovative strategies.

Following a recent re-organisation there is now a need to recruit a class leading Managing Director. The successful candidate will lead, develop and coach the already high performing team to ensure the continued successful growth and excellence of the business as it build towards exit, of which, the MD will be a key component, and beneficiary.

This is a highly exciting opportunity as the Company sees the appointee in this pivotal role as a critical part of the senior management team and as such expect the individual to continue to develop their career within the business to the very highest level.

The MD will inspire, lead and develop the management team with clear objectives and focus, seeking to maximise profitable sales. You will continually improve operational standards and drive forward to measures with the clear objective of improving revenue and earnings by refining and targeting existing product ranges/brands, introducing new/innovative products and services whilst developing new offerings to new and existing customers. Key to the role will be the development of commercial performance, different formats, growing and sustaining competitive advantage and maximising business development opportunities.

Primary functions:

  • Strategy and Business Planning
  • Employee Direction and Leadership
  • Business Performance against all metrics & KPIs set
  • Buying
  • Multi-Channel
  • Marketing
  • eCommerce & Retail Operations

Key accountabilities:

  • Driving the business performance within stores and online
  • Ensure that full attention is given to customers and that they are provided with a high level of service. There will be a perceived point of difference with competitors.
  • To lead and manage the development of the business, both strategically and operationally
  • To meet budget expectations, adding value to all activities and helping to achieve excellent customer experience and sustainable competitive advantage
  • Promote best practice in delivering the highest standards of operational integrity across the product portfolio
  • Take full responsibility for the achievement of key objectives (sales, cash and capital expenditure) rapidly becoming familiar with the business, its culture, markets and products
  • Ensure the product range is competitive and meets or exceeds customer expectations
  • Ensure the company’s operational infrastructure supports the business plan and that the company complies fully with regulatory and legislative requirements
  • Benchmark business performance and processes against industry best practice, proposing to the Board change where necessary
  • Continually strive to introduce new innovations including services and products

Key performance indicators:

  • Revenue and margin delivery to target across category and channel
  • Optimum terms and conditions and service levels from suppliers against targets
  • Optimal product availability and use of open to buy to deliver a current and relevant offer by category and channel in line with objectives and targets

Specific responsibilities and activities:

Category and channel growth

  • Forecast, plan and implement effective buying strategies by category and channel to maximise revenue and margin.

Range planning

  • To develop, deliver and maintain a current and relevant product offer and price architecture by channel in line customer and market trends.
  • Ongoing review and analysis of range and promotion opportunities by category and channel.
  • Anticipation of future trends and demands to ensure the product offer is continually updated.
  • Ensure seasonal delivery of product range to deliver right product at the right margin, time and quantity by channel and geographical need.
  • Timely response to sales patterns and sell through.

Supplier Management

  • To ensure individually negotiated supplier terms to achieve and exceed (through sustainable and effective negotiations) against targets for terms and service.
  • To achieve and aim to exceed against financial goals and targets through developing and maintaining a highly effective and agile supplier base to allow rapid and commercial appropriate response to both strategic and reactive buying and promotion activity and opportunities whilst delivering a decreased cost of goods.


  • To assume responsibility by category and channel for the commercial performance of the product range.
  • To develop a detailed forecast to meet availability, cash flow and intake targets.
  • To identify and leverage opportunities for co-operation and collaborative working to improve terms and margin across main range, promotion and deal activity.
  • To plan and review the commercial success of promotion and deal activity by channel.


  • To ensure ongoing review, reporting and evaluation against performance along with proactive and reactive plans to deliver against strategic and financial goals.

Product Range

  • To ensure continued profitability and growth by category and channel of their product offer and range through the ongoing review and analysis of trends, consumer behaviour, competitor activity and promotion opportunity.

Team Leadership

  • To provide ongoing direction, coaching and support of both the developing trading team and those functions (including but limited to those above) which work with and can contribute to the success of the trading team.

Personal Development

  • To maintain up to date knowledge of relevant markets and competitors.  Attend and play an active role in networks and groups that will help us reach and develop key relationships to develop and grow our business.

Qualifications, Knowledge and Experience

  • Proven track record leading a commercially focused retail/online business
  • Strong commercial and negotiating skills – internal and external
  • Experience of planning and organising a buying team in a multi/omni-channel environment
  • Ideally experience of the luxury branded goods market

Competencies and Personal Attributes

  • A natural leader who will identify and create sales, promotion and profit opportunities by working across internal teams and the supplier base – prioritising and personally managing where appropriate the largest suppliers and the introduction of new product categories
  • Strong influencing and motivational skills to lead virtual and actual teams – internally and externally
  • Adaptable and flexible in style and approach
  • A hands-on self starter
  • Flexible and sufficiently mobile to travel both within the UK and overseas to travel as necessary to meet and develop the supply base
  • A natural coach and leader who will support both his/her and the wider team

The successful candidate will be an accomplished online-biased retailer with a demonstrable track record and a proven ability to drive growth through the optimisation of existing channels and product mix coupled with the creativity to identify and launch pertinent new propositions. They will furthermore have a track record of providing meaningful leadership in a service led eCommerce/retail environment, developing successful, high performing teams and fostering a ‘can-do/will-do’ attitude. Additionally, they will bring a depth of experience in the online marketplace and may have also had exposure to other direct to consumer businesses and their associated marketing methods.

They will have had significant experience in a competitive eCommerce-led environment and will have the demonstrable ability to cover and add value to all areas. They will have recent, significant experience in an entrepreneurial environment with a flat, direct management structure and a very strong action orientated culture. They will ooze entrepreneurial spark, flair, drive and vision and be a natural leader. It will be immediately obvious why the appointee has been successful.

To apply for this fantastic role, please email your CV along with current salary/package details to Gary Chaplin
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