Appointment part of large-format stores push
Travis Perkins has appointed Martin Meech as group property director and chief executive of Travis Perkins Property Company.

He was formerly Dixons Group property managing director, a post he has held for 12 years. He will join the builders' merchant and DIY retailer in September, reporting directly to group chief executive Geoff Cooper.

Meech has nearly 20 years' experience in big-space retail property, including working as property director for Halfords and property and development director at Gateway Foodmarkets.

He is also a board member of the British Council of Shopping Centres (BCSC) and the chairman of the property advisory group of the British Retail Consortium (BRC).

Travis Perkins completed the£950 million acquisition of DIY retailer Wickes in February. Part of its integration strategy is to extend the brand's large-format Extra stores to compete with rival B&Q.

In March, Wickes commercial director Jeremy Bird said: 'There's no reason why we shouldn't have 100 Wickes Extra stores in the not too-distant future.'

Meech's appointment follows Travis Perkins' recruitment of former Big Food Group strategy director Norman Bell in June.

He joined the company as managing director for Travis Perkins Southwest on July 1, and is responsible for 1,590 outlets.

Commenting on Meech's appointment, Cooper said: 'We are delighted to have recruited an experienced group property director with an outstanding track record in the retail and property sectors. Travis Perkins' retail and merchanting divisions will have significant potential of further growth through expansion and from realisation of value from their existing property portfolios.'