Douglas Gurr, founder and former chief executive of The Grocer Big 30 online delivered wholesaler Blueheath, has joined Asda as director of strategy.

Blueheath announced in June that Gurr would be leaving the company in August following a business review (The Grocer, 3 June, p20). He was replaced by Mark Aylwin, the supply chain director for Musgrave Budgens Londis, who is expected to take up his new role next month (The Grocer, 10 June, p20).

A spokeswoman for Asda said that Gurr had joined the retailer last week and would be reporting directly to Asda president Andy Bond. It is a new role at the company. She added: "We are very excited to get Douglas on board and we are all looking forward to working with him."

Gurr led Blueheath from the establishment of the company in April 2001. He propelled the wholesaler to its current position of 19th on The Grocer Big 30 list after its flotation on the Alternative Investment Market and its acquisition of CTM Wholesale and AC Ward last year.

In May, Gurr was also named as the fifth most influential figure in wholesale in The Grocer's power list. Prior to Blueheath he was head of retail for more than five years at consultancy firm McKinsey.

Gurr's role is the second senior position created at Asda in as many weeks. Last week Asda promoted Dr Chris Brown, agriculture development manager, to the newly-created role of head of ethical and sustainable sourcing (The Grocer, 19 August, p20).

However, Asda has also lost a number of its senior management. Brand and marketing director Richard Hodgson will be joining Waitrose in the autumn as director of buying, while non food trading director Tony Page will be moving to Woolworths as MD for commercial and marketing in September.