H&M CEO Helena Helmersson Abruptly Quits
Helena Helmersson, who served as H&M's CEO for four years, gave her resignation in a surprise announcement Wednesday. The Associated Press reported that Helmersson said the past few years have been "very demanding at times for me personally. I am very proud of what we together have achieved during the last [few] years when we navigated through [a] pandemic and several geopolitical and macroeconomic challenges,” she said in a statement.
Prior to being CEO of H&M, Helmersson spent an additional 22 years at the company in various leadership roles. She said in a company press release it was with "mixed feelings" that she informed H&M's board of her departure.
Helmersson will be replaced by Daniel Ervér, who is currently in charge of the H&M brand — the largest of the company's eight brands — and has been with the Swedish company for 18 years.
Total Retail's Take: Agence France-Press reported Wednesday that shares of H&M group dropped by 9 percent following the announcement of Helmersson's departure. The company posted a net profit of $840 million in 2023, a 2.5-fold increase from a year earlier. H&M's most recent financial statement shows that sales dropped 4 percent from Dec. 1 to Jan. 29 compared to the same time last year. During her time as CEO, Helmersson weathered a series of challenges, including the COVID-19 pandemic, the reduction of H&M's store footprint, and increased competition from fast-fashion, low-cost brands like Shein and Zara.