Boohoo boss to break silence in front of MPs next month 

Senior judge Sir Brian Leveson will also oversee the fashion brand's efforts to tackle supply chain issues

The executive chairman of Boohoo will break his silence for the first time since the retailer became embroiled in a "sweatshop" scandal over the summer when he gives evidence in front of MPs next month. 

Mahmud Kamani, co-founder of the online fashion giant, will be quizzed by members of the Commons Environmental Audit Committee (EAC) on December 16. 

The session will examine what progress has been made in "tackling the environmental and social impact of the fashion industry" since the cross-party committee's last inquiry in 2018.

It will be Mr Kamani's first public outing since Boohoo was plunged into turmoil after an investigation commissioned by the company found that bosses knew workers were being mistreated in its Leicester supply chain months before a "sweatshop" scandal exploded in the media. 

The probe found no evidence Boohoo had broken the law, but said the company failed to take action fast enough and warned that its supply chain is likely to be riddled with bad behaviour.

Last month, analysts at Peel Hunt, a top City broker, called for an independent chairman to be appointed following the report and four of Britain's biggest auditors ruled out working for the scandal-hit fast fashion firm. 

In 2018, Boohoo co-founder Carol Kane was called to give evidence in front of the EAC. However, after the independent review by Alison Levitt QC, it emerged that the information she gave about its suppliers was inaccurate, but she was unaware that this was the case. 

On Thursday, the retailer also appointed retired senior judge Sir Brian Leveson to oversee its programme to overhaul supply chain issues and tackle poor working practices. 

It said Sir Brian would report directly to the board and all of his reports will be published. He will be assisted by KPMG as part of Boohoo's "Agenda for Change", the company added. 

Between 2011 and 2012, Sir Brian chaired the Leveson Inquiry, which examined the culture, practices and ethics of the British press following revelations that journalists at the News of the World were hacking people's phones to get stories. 

Sir Brian said: "Boohoo has recognised that it must institute and embed change so that everyone involved in the group's supply chain is treated fully in accordance with the law and the principles of ethical trading.

"I look forward to providing independent oversight of the Agenda for Change programme and to working with the Boohoo team, KPMG and the other independent experts to achieve this, while, at the same time, providing publicly available progress reports."

Greg Lawless,an analyst at Shore Capital, said: "Today's news is another step in the right direction and highlights the need to effect real change at the company, which we believe will be welcomed by independent shareholders.

"We will watch developments closely and look for signs of both improved corporate governance and tangible changes to the operating mode."