John Drummond

John Drummond, the face of the Scottish grocery sector for nearly 10 years, is retiring as chief executive of the Scottish Grocers’ Federation (SGF) at the beginning of April.

The organisation’s national executive has named Alloa Spar retailer Pete Cheema as his successor. Cheema has been a member of the national executive for 16 years and served as president between 2010 and 2012.

Colleagues credit Drummond with having had the vision to recognise that the best way for the SGF to secure a sustainable and viable convenience store sector was to influence and inform the Scottish government and the Scottish parliament.

This vision succeed to the extent that SGF engaged regularly and effectively with key figures in government and parliament, including the first minister.

Drummond said: “I have enjoyed immensely the past decade at SGF and hope I have contributed towards making SGF relevant in terms of lobbying and the political connection on behalf of members.”

Abdul Majid, SGF president, said Drummond had given the Federation the credibility and integrity to become a highly effective political engagement organisation.

“Key policy and decision makers view SGF as being an organisation that they can do business with,” he said. Drummond had taken the SGF to a new level and transformed its ability to advocate on behalf of members.

“This is a great loss to the Federation and to the industry…We are sure that he will be able to provide guidance and support to the National Executive as it builds for the future,” Majid added.

Cheema and Drummond will work closely over the next few weeks to ensure a smooth transition.