Discounter Netto has brought in former Sainsbury's manager Paul Newby as store operations director to help reposition the chain as a mainstream supermarket.

Netto managing director Richard Lancaster has appointed his former Sainsbury's colleague to oversee store standards.

Newby will play a key part as Netto attempts to add another 20 stores to the 182-store chain over the next 12 months and said it was an exciting time to be joining the company.

"We are trying to become a more inclusive retailer and we've got lots of opportunities to progress the business," he said. "We've got some great sites and great people and we're now focusing more on quality."

Newby was a regional manager at Sainsbury's, overseeing 75 convenience stores.

He began his career at Frank Dee Supermarkets in the north east, which was acquired by Gateway and subsequently Somerfield.

He moved to Asda in the early 1990s before joining Jacksons in 1992 to help launch the Jacksons Convenience Stores business, which Sainsbury's acquired in 2004.

Meanwhile, Damian Ingle, who has been in non-food retailing for more than 10 years, has become Netto's non-food business unit controller.

Ingle will be responsible for driving non-food sales, which account for 10% of Netto's turnover, and building relationships with suppliers in the Far East.

"Netto has an incredibly loyal customer base and my aim is to improve and innovate our non-food offer," said Ingle.

The two appointments would help take Netto forward, said Lancaster.

"We have ambitious plans for expansion over the next three years and Paul and Damian will undoubtedly make an important contribution to the business."