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Ideal Shopping Direct Boosts Senior Management Team with Appointment of New CMO

By Emily Peagram 14 Jul 2021

Ideal Shopping Direct (ISD), the leading UK multi-channel retailer and owner of the Create and Craft and Ideal World TV channels, has further strengthened its senior management team with the appointment of Ashley Payne as Chief Marketing Officer.

Ashley brings 10 years of experience in senior leadership roles in eCommerce and retail with the likes of Debenhams and Tesco, as well as seven years’ experience of performance improvement, restructuring and turnaround for private equity clients and retail businesses.

His appointment follows a significant turnaround for the company, buoyed by increased TV audiences, sales and resilience in an increasingly challenging retail environment. Ashley is a key strategic hire for the next stage of the business’ growth.

At ISD Ashley will be responsible for strengthening the pure-play marketplace, growing the core TV customer relationships, and working alongside the commercial team to extend the product range of both brands to meet changing consumer needs post-Covid. Reporting into CEO Jamie Martin, Ashley will lead a team of 35 across the business’ Marketing, Digital Commerce and Marketplace teams.

Jamie Martin says: “We’re excited to have Ashley on board and he joins at an incredible time for our business. 2020 was the biggest trading year in our company’s history as we successfully navigated the challenges of the pandemic and we’re now focused on driving forward ambitious growth plans. A key part of our strategy is adopting a more digitally-centric approach to ensure we thrive in an increasingly on-demand, online world. With his commercial, digital-first and consumer-led mindset Ashley is the ideal person to lead this and we’re sure he’ll be an integral part of our future success.”

Commenting on his appointment, Ashley says: “A business that literally spends all day talking to its customers is a rare opportunity in retail. Our customers are also very vocal; they want to continually engage with our brands and when it comes to Create and Craft, they’re extremely passionate about their hobby. And ISD isn’t just a retailer, it’s also entertainment. It’s a very unique and interesting business to be a part of.

“We already have some exciting growth plans and I want to make sure we realise them. We are a special business, and it will be as important to leverage our strengths as it will be to look for new opportunities as we continue to evolve and expand over the next few years.”

Based in Peterborough, Ideal Shopping Direct sells into over 31m homes in the UK via UK shopping channels on Sky, Freeview, Freesat, Virgin and late-night ITV plus 35m homes in America and on its own websites.

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