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Saturday, June 12, 2021

CEO of retailer Zalando resigns to prioritise wife’s career

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The chief executive of online fashion retailer Zalando is stepping down to focus on his family, saying his wife’s career should “take priority” in the coming years.

Rubin Ritter, one of three co-chief executives at Zalando, has been in the job since 2010.

Tasked with overseeing strategy and communications, the 38-year-old helped turn the Berlin-based start-up into one of the world’s top online fashion retailers with 14,000 employees and net profit of almost €100 million in 2019.

In a statement, Zalando said Mr Ritter had informed the company on Sunday of his decision to step down in 2021, more than two years before his contract ends.

“I feel that it is time to give my life a new direction,” Mr Ritter said.

“I want to devote more time to my growing family. My wife and I have agreed that for the coming years, her professional ambitions should take priority.”

The head of Zalando’s supervisory board, Cristina Stenbeck, said the company regretted Mr Ritter’s decision but “we have the highest respect for the underlying personal motivation”.

Last month, Mr Ritter published the company’s first report on diversity and inclusion, saying these should be seen as “an opportunity rather than a challenge”.

The company has been criticised for currently having only men on its five-member management board.

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