Esprit has appointed José Manuel Martínez Gutiérrez as chief executive and executive director. He will replace Ronald van der Vis, who has asked to leave the company for personal and family reasons. Martínez, who will join Esprit by the end of September, comes from the Spanish retail group Inditex, owner of Zara and other big chains, where he has held various senior roles and was most recently group director of distribution and operations. He also spent eight years at McKinsey, where he led the firm's retail and consumer goods practice in Spain.

Esprit's share price soared after the announcement of the new CEO. The company, which is in the midst of a major transformation, previously announced a series of changes in its management structure.

Meanwhile, Esprit has opened a new automated distribution center near its European office in Mönchenblach, Germany, following an investment estimated at €40 million. The 52,000-square-meter complex was originally supposed to go into operation in the spring of 2011.