Sainsbury’s is to focus on strengthening its non-food business to form a “cohesive” general merchandise offer following the promotion of Adrian Mountford to director of general merchandise.
Mountford, previously director of clothing for Sainsbury’s Tu, will take up his new role on Monday, heading Sainsbury’s entire general merchandise business, including clothing.
“We have a lot of opportunity in non-food,” he said. “The clothing business is a lot more settled, but because the non-food team moved from London to Coventry only last year a lot of people are still quite new.”
Under Mountford’s tenure, Tu’s sales grew fivefold in four years. “We will focus on basic retail principles - product, the customer, and how we present that product in store,” he said. “There’s still loads of room to grow in clothing too, especially as we grow the amount of space in store dedicated to it.”
Development of the non-food offer is one of Sainsbury’s priorities. The retailer said in July that its £445m capital raising would allow it to drive the non-food business forward and open more space.
Mountford could not say when Sainsbury’s will add clothing to its ecommerce site.
Sara Bradley, previously head of buying for Tu, replaces Mountford.
Sainsbury’s updates on second-quarter trading on Wednesday. Broker Jefferies expects the grocer to post like-for-like growth of 5.6%.