The British Retail Consortium is seeing in the new year with a brand new director general, Helen Dickinson, who officially took the reins from Stephen Robertson on January 1.
Ms Dickinson has more than 20 years of experience at KPMG as UK head of retail, and was audit and relationship partner for many retail businesses. Mr Robertson left the BRC in December after five years as director general
The BRC described Helen Dickinson has "a highly regarded media commentator on developments in the industry".
BRC chairman Ian Cheshire said: "We are delighted to welcome Helen on board. She brings extensive experience and understanding of the retail sector to the role, which will help us to support members through these challenging times.
"On behalf of all the BRC's members, we would also like to thank Stephen Robertson for leading the BRC so successfully over the last five years."
Ms Dickinson said she was "hugely honoured to be leading the BRC into 2013 and beyond," adding: "The BRC plays a vital role in supporting retailers to develop their businesses and championing the important contribution the industry makes to the UK economy as well as to the lives of all of us as consumers.
"We're on the cusp of what is likely to be another challenging year for customers and retailers alike, which makes it more crucial than ever that we can provide voice and leadership to the industry. I look forward to working with our members, Ian and the BRC team."