Harold Brooks to Retire from DFS Group, Succeeded by Andrea O'Donnell

Global Harold Brooks to Retire from DFS Group, Succeeded by Andrea O'Donnell Harold-Brooks.jpg

SEPTEMBER 12, 2014, Hong Kong – After six years as the head of our Merchandising Group, and a long career in management and merchandising with leading retail organisations, Harold Brooks will retire from his role as President of Global Merchandising and return to the United States at the end of this year.

During Harold’s tenure with DFS, the business has grown significantly, both organically driven by constant improvements of the merchandise mix, and through new stores. Harold has been instrumental in driving innovation, sales and profitability, and helped position DFS as one of the world’s premier purveyors of luxury brands.

With significant experience and product merchandising talents, he further developed the company’s important brand partnerships and helped create an exceptional shopping experience for DFS’ core customers – the global traveller.

Philippe Schaus, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of DFS Group, commented: “I would like to personally thank Harold for our great partnership and his dedication in helping evolve and grow our company during this very exciting period. He has not only been a great leader of our Merchandising Team, but he has also brought invaluable insights as a key member of our Senior Executive Committee and as a partner to me as CEO.”

Prior to joining DFS in 2008, Harold enjoyed a successful career in fashion retail in the United States, including 20 years with May Department Stores culminating with the role of President and CEO of one of their divisions. He subsequently moved to the wholesale side of the business serving as President of the Fashion Watch division with Fossil, Inc. prior to joining DFS.

Mr. Brooks stated: “DFS is a tremendous company and I’m very proud of all we have accomplished over the last six years. As an innovative leader in the travel retail industry, we have continued to introduce new ways to excite our customers and create valuable channels for our brand partners. I know that I am leaving DFS in great hands and look forward to following its continued success in the years to come.”

During the next three months, Harold will be handing over the reins of Global Merchandising to Andrea O’Donnell, who will be joining DFS on October 6, 2014. They will be working together closely through the end of the year to ensure a seamless transition both internally and externally. Harold retires from DFS Group on December 31, 2014.

Andrea has enjoyed a successful career in merchandising and planning, including 20 years in the UK with leading retailers such as Arcadia, Debenhams and John Lewis, where she was a Board Director responsible for Strategy, Online and Omni Channel, Property, B2B and Retail Shop openings. Most recently Andrea was Executive Director for Lane Crawford, based in Hong Kong and responsible for Merchandising, Store Planning, CRM and Marketing.