Helmersson out at H&M as fashion giant announces shock executive change

Swedish fast fashion giant H&M has announced a surprise shakeup at the top of the company with Daniel Ervér to replace Helena Helmersson as group chief executive officer.

While firmly establishing itself as one of the largest fashion retailers on the planet, the company has struggled to deal with the emergence of low-cost online companies like China’s Shein and has recently started to lag behind Inditex-owned Zara.

The executive shakeup comes as the company revealed its sales for December and January had dropped by 4 per cent year over year.

Helmersson has left the company with immediate effect after four years as chief exec. Speaking during the company’s fourth quarter earnings call, the now former H&M boss said: “The last few years have been very intense with the pandemic and several geopolitical and macroeconomic challenges. It has at times been very demanding for me personally and I now feel that it is time to leave the chief executive officer role to slow down a little bit and reflect.”

Her replacement, Ervér, is an 18 year H&M veteran and will continue in his role as head of the retailer’s core H&M brand alongside the chief exec position.

After being introduced by Helmersson during the earnings call, he said: “I believe our industry is filled with opportunities and that our business idea to offer fashion, quality at the best price in a sustainable way is more relevant than ever. And I see great opportunities ahead to continue to create profitable growth.

While I'm humbled for the challenges we face in the world around us, I look forward to taking on the journey ahead together with our great teams here at the H&M Group.”

In a late 2023 interview with Reuters, Ervér expressed an interest in the top job.

He added during the earnings call: “We are in a market that is growing, that is very fragmented. I believe our model with having physical and digital retail in combination with strong direct-to-consumer brands in our portfolio is a great model for growth and more relevant than ever in the existing market conditions.”



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