Debenhams managing director Angela Spindler is to leave the department store retailer after less than a year in the role.
The shock exit comes as Debenhams appoints chief operating officer Michael Sharp as deputy chief executive, continuing to report in to chief executive Rob Templeman.
Sharp will assume responsibility for marketing and online business at the company.
Spindler will leave on November 30. No reason was given for her departure.
Templeman said: "Michael's track record and knowledge of the Debenhams business, along with his long established pedigree in the fashion industry, leaves him well placed to take on the position as deputy chief executive and the additional responsibilities it entails."
He added: "We would like to thank Angela for her work over the last year at Debenhams and wish her all the best in her future plans."
Trading director for womenswear, lingerie, women's accessories and health and beauty, Suzanne Harlow, will be promoted to group trading director.
Author: Amy Shields, www.retail-week.com