Halfords has drafted in former Dixons Carphone executive Keith Jones as part of a restructure of its senior leadership team, Retail Week has learned.
Jones, who is also a former boss of JJB Sports, has joined the cycling and automotive specialist as chief operating officer.
He will be responsible for Halfords’ retail operations and has also been tasked with driving the transformation of its services offer, including its business-to-business proposition and financial services.
His appointment comes as part of a leadership team reshuffle by boss Graham Stapleton – himself a former Dixons Carphone exec.
Stapleton has scrapped the roles of group commercial director and retail director – formerly held by Steve Knights and Ian Carter respectively.
Sources close to the situation said the move was designed to better “align the commercial and customer functions”, speed up decision-making and create a more customer-centric team.
Following the departures of Knights and Carter, Karen Bellairs has become customer and commercial director. Bellairs will take responsibility for the commercial team, while continuing to lead Halfords’ customer, marketing and digital functions.
The changes, which were confirmed by Halfords, come as Stapleton presses ahead with his strategy for the business.
At a Capital Markets Day last September, Stapleton told investors and analysts that Halfords would focus on the mantra: “To inspire and support a lifetime of motoring and cycling.”
As part of that drive, Stapleton said he wanted Halfords to become “a truly differentiated, service-led super-specialist” that would “inspire” customers through a differentiated shopping experience, and support them through “an integrated, unique and more convenient” services proposition.
Stapleton has ramped up capital expenditure from £40m to £60m per year “in the medium term” as Halfords ploughs “significant investment” into stores, garages and digital platforms.