Heere joins from fashion retailer Inditex, which operates chains such as Zara and Bershka, where he is currently general manager of Russia.
He will report directly to M&S CEO Marc Bolland as a member of the company’s management committee.
Bolland has previously outlined plans to transform M&S “from a UK multi-channel retailer to an international multi-channel retailer” by 2015.
The retailer aims to grow international sales from circa £500m this year to £1bn by 2014.
M&S will particularly focus on emerging markets in India and China to put more emphasis on its franchise partners to drive growth.
M&S is also terminating its relationship with Amazon, which hosts its online platform, in 2013 in favour of building its own more flexible platform to accelerate online growth.
M&S reported a 4.5% festive sales increase at international stores for the 13 weeks to 1 January, which it said reflected a good performance across most markets.
Marks & Spencer currently has more than 350 stores in 42 territories around the world, including Russia, Turkey, China and India.