JYSK has announced the latest in a raft of changes at management level (see related), with the appointment of Carsten Nørgreen Weinkouff (pictured) to the post of executive VP.

The retail group says Carsten has worked continuously on improving customers’ shopping experience in its stores since 2015, and now wishes to do even more testing to increase sales and commercial attractiveness further. 

Although the promotion was a natural progression for the retail specialist, customer service and B2B are new areas for Carsten, who explains: “My mind has always been that if you get a challenge, then take it. We have very competent directors, which means that I don’t have to be a specialist throughout all details. It is my job to focus on how we can become even better and to ensure the right direction in close co-operation with our managers and directors. Last but not least, I want to do my part in securing that we continue to be curious about new opportunities and challenge the existing."

Going from apprentice to executive VP, and with no further education than his apprenticeship, Carsten has climbed the career ladder the old-fashioned way. He started his career as an apprentice in Intersport, a sports retail chain, before his career took off at Bestseller, another big Danish retailer in the fashion industry. Here, he started as a warehouse employee and ended as regional retail manager, combined with global responsibility for concept and visual merchandising, before joining JYSK in 2015 as store design manager.

At that time, a pilot store for JYSK’s Store Concept 3.0 was already born, and soon Carsten was put in charge of the rollout as the new retail development director. 

”I came from Bestseller, where every small detail in the store was considered carefully, as most of the stores were placed in city centres with competitors everywhere," he says. "In JYSK, the stores of course had to look great, but the most important was to display as many products as possible. Here, I saw room for improvement."

He continues: “Of course, we should not try new things without doing our research first, but I would like us to dare to be bolder when we test concepts, new features and layouts. We should always be curious about what is next. At the same time, I also believe that we will benefit from making more local adjustments, than we do today, of course without losing our efficiency.” 

On 1st September, president and CEO Rami Jensen and his new executive management team officially took over, and for Carsten the change represents "an exciting new role in a new team": “I represent the non-academic approach with a retail perspective on how our stores and business should look and how we should attract and service our customers. My approach is to challenge the existing to get the most out of the platform that the stores and JYSK stand for within the JYSK DNA.

“I humbly enter this role, as JYSK’s results over the years speak for themselves. The opportunity to make an impact on the business is both a big motivation as well as a great challenge. I really look forward to setting an even bigger footprint on JYSK together with the rest of the executive management team.”

Earlier this week, JYSK also announced the appointment of Martin Amstrup Bang as executive VP of purchasing.

After five years as CEO of SENG, Martin returned to JYSK in February to officially take over the post this month.

"I have been part of JYSK half of my life, so when I returned after five years, it felt a bit like coming home," says Martin, who started as JYSK's assistant in purchasing in 2001. Apart from a short stint at Danish DIY retailer Silvan in 2006, his career unfolded at JYSK until 2018, when he became CEO of SENG, which, like JYSK, is part of Lars Larsen Group.

"I am looking forward to creating results in collaboration with my colleagues and also to influencing the overall direction. It is a new and broader role for me at JYSK, but I can draw on my previous experience, both from Purchasing at JYSK and CEO at SENG,” he says.

One of his first tasks is to establish a so-called 'new normal' in the purchasing department. "It has been turbulent years with the coronavirus, inflation and war making it more difficult to control the flow of goods and prices than what we have been used to. Now our focus must be on creating strong collaborations across the entire department based on a new baseline,” he concludes.