The Co-operative Food has reshuffled its management team poaching Sainsbury’s director Andrew Mann and former New Look and Asda IT director Howard Reed.
Mann, currently director of insight and loyalty at Sainsbury’s, will take up the newly-created role of customer director. He will report directly to Steve Murrells, who took over the reins of The Co-operative Food last July.
Mann has held senior marketing positions in Cadbury, Schweppes, Coca-Cola and Centrica and held marketing director positions in Tesco including Clubcard and strategy and innovation.
Reed, who has taken up the new role of food chief information officer, has joined the business from New Look where he was group IT and change director. He has previously also worked in IT at Asda.
The move comes as Co-operative Group chief information officer Andy Haywood is plotting the launch of a new online strategy across the group. The plan could include an online grocery offer and Haywood expects to make a decision on whether to launch an online food service by April.
The Co-op has also rolled out Amazon collection lockers in store allowing shoppers to collect online purchases. The rows of up to 30 lockers are now in 250 stores and the retailer will shortly begin putting grocery money-off coupons for The Co-op inside the lockers for shoppers collecting orders.
Murrells, who joined The Co-operative in July, said: “When customers come to pick up their tablets and iPhones they will get a voucher.”
The Co-op management reshuffle comes after the business revealed in December that Kingfisher chief operating officer Euan Sutherland had been appointed as its new group chief executive, replacing Peter Marks, in May.
As part of the reshuffle, Cheryl Marshall takes up the role of service delivery director, moving across from her group role in charge of the unity programme, which aims to bring the Co-op’s wide0ranging businesses closer together. Mark Hale, who was director of food information services and supply chain, becomes supply chain director.
Mike Osmond, Steve Bailey, David Roberts and Debs Gleeson remain respectively as commercial, finance, property and HR directors.
The Co-op Food yesterday reported a 2.2% uplift in like-for-like sales in the three weeks ending January 5 as its convenience stores drove growth over Christmas.
Murrells said: “Everyone within the new food executive team will have shared responsibilities and clear and aligned accountabilities for driving the performance of our food business, concentrating on delivering quality and value for our customers and an enhanced experience at store level, as we did over the important Christmas and New Year period when our stores traded strongly on the back of an improved underlying performance during the second half of 2012.”
Murrells told Retail Week that the retailer has worked on improving hygiene, store standards and service. The Co-operative last week defended its store standards after criticism on its Facebook page.
Murrells also said that the grocer has rolled out its new ‘Fresh Format’ stores featuring an increased proportion of fresh food, an improved bakery offer and increased numbers of store staff.