Wheelock and Co chairman Gonzaga Li Wei-jen has returned to head the group's upmarket retail arm Lane Crawford International in the wake of losses in the territory and Singapore. Mr Li, who is also chairman of Wheelock's 46 per cent-owned conglomerate Wharf (Holdings), yesterday was appointed as chairman of Lane Crawford to replace John Lees. Mr Li stepped down from the board of Lane Crawford in 1994 to devote more time to Wharf. Analysts said the appointment demonstrated the company's attempts to revive Lane Crawford, which suffered a $90.8 million net loss at the interim stage mainly due to a $33.7 million provision relating to the closure of its Singapore store. Head of corporate affairs at Wheelock, Gary Shing, said Mr Lees, who is 68, had retired. 'Executive director Balbina Wong will be responsible for daily operations while Mr Li will make policy decisions,' he said. An analyst at a European brokerage said Lane Crawford was expected to make efforts such as reshuffling management to return to profitability. Other moves have included renovating stores and introducing new brands in the territory, she said. Lane Crawford opens its 55,000 square foot department store in Times Square, Causeway Bay, today.