Former Morrisons marketing director Belinda Youngs has been appointed as the new CEO of northern bakery chain Cooplands.
Youngs has more than two decades’ experience in the grocery retail sector - in the UK and internationally.
She left Morrisons as corporate brand and marketing director in 2014 after joining the supermarket as own-brand director in 2012.
Youngs also served as chief marketing officer at Canadian food retailer Sobeys for almost seven years and worked at Sainsbury’s for 11 years, where she was a trading manager.
“Cooplands is a business with a rich heritage and culture, and with a significant opportunity to grow its shareholder value even further,” Youngs said.
“I look forward to helping to build the brand, which focuses on producing quality products at great value, in formats and locations that continue to meet the needs of today’s and tomorrow’s customers.”
Founded in 1885, the fourth-generation Cooplands has been led by MD Paul Coopland since 1985. The business now operates from 160 shops across Yorkshire, Lincolnshire and the north east and has a turnover of almost £50m.
In December 2017, the Business Growth Fund (BGF) invested £8.5m in the business to support the growth strategy and rollout of more shops across the north of England.
Paul Coopland said: “These are exciting times for the business as we continue to scale up and expand across the north of England. Belinda’s combination of big brand retail experience and entrepreneurial mindset made her the ideal candidate to help take Cooplands into the next chapter of its growth story.”
Barry Jackson, an investor at BGF, added: “Nearly two years on from our initial investment, Cooplands is going from strength to strength. Belinda’s appointment is the next step on that exciting growth journey, and we’re pleased to continue to support the business as a long-term investment partner.”