John Lewis, a London-based chain of 39 department and home furnishing stores across the United Kingdom, has named Mark Lewis, a courier company CEO and former eBay marketplace executive, as its online director of web and omnichannel retailing. Lewis will start in the newly created position March 4 and report to managing director Andy Street, the top executive of the John Lewis retail chain.
“Mark is ideally placed to continue the growth and development of our online business,” Street says. “He brings insight and experience of the retail sector, and will be driving further innovation across both our web site and omnichannel offering.” Omnichannel retailing refers to the ability of retailers to engage and serve consumers however they prefer to shop across retail channels such as on mobile devices, the web or in stores.
Lewis is the retailer’s first online director responsible for both web and omnichannel retailing, though many of the online responsibilities were covered by Andrea O’Donnell, who left the company last year, a spokeswoman says. He will also join the John Lewis management board.
The John Lewis chain, No. 16 in the Internet Retailer Top 400 Europe, is operated by the John Lewis Partnership, which also operates a chain of 288 Waitrose supermarkets. The company also operates the e-commerce sites JohnLewis.com and Waitrose.com. There is no family connection between Mark Lewis and the John Lewis Partnership, which has roots going back to 1865 in retail operations founded in London by John Lewis, the spokeswoman says.
Lewis will join John Lewis from his current position as CEO of Collect+, a U.K.-based courier service that provides delivery services in the U.K. for retail companies and brands including Amazon.com Inc., eBay Inc., Asos and Clarks. Lewis has been CEO of Collect+ since June 2010.
Prior to Collect+, he spent six years as a country manager and managing director for eBay’s U.K. operations. In earlier positions, Lewis worked as a retail industry consultant and an advertising agency account director.