Tony Reed, CEO of Tesco’s convenience store chain One Stop, is to head up Tesco’s entire convenience operation as part of the retailer’s ongoing shake-up.
The retailer is bringing together about 2,700 Metro, Express and One Stop stores under one management roof, with Tesco lifer Reed, who started out as a shelf stacker aged 15, appointed retail director, convenience.
Reed, who began exploring a potential new blueprint for Tesco’s c-store operation in May last year, will be backed up by Mark Williams, who moves from One Stop property director to One Stop retail director.
Reed’s promotion comes in what sources described as a “seismic” week of developments at Tesco’s soon to be closed Cheshunt HQ, which is expected to end with many senior managers and hundreds of buyers losing their jobs.
As part of the shake-up Gary Mills, previously retail director for convenience, has been appointed retail director north. Claire Chandler, formerly managing director of Metro, will move to retail director central, and Jonny McQuarrie, formerly London operations director, has been named retail director south. Andrew Woolfenden, formerly retail director south, becomes the company’s distribution director.
Meanwhile, Matt Simister, who was one of the executives asked to step aside by Tesco following its accounting revelations but was subsequently cleared of involvement, has been given the role of commercial director for fresh foods and commodities, reporting to head of commercial Jason Tarry.
Kris Comerford, formerly produce category director, is to head up the fresh food category reporting into Simister. Darren Clough, formerly group sourcing director, has been moved to Tesco’s Central European operation, believed to be Turkey.
Sources close to Tesco are also speculating Lewis may be ditching its separate London division, with London MD Andrew Yaxley not featuring among the new management positions announced to date.
One supplier said the changes announced to staff in the past two weeks had been enormous. “We are talking about a truly seismic change in the management structure and many people leaving the business. Despite that, there is a widespread feeling Lewis is making the tough decisions that need to be made.”
Another leading supplier added: “This is the right thing to do as Tesco is such a complicated business. It has been crying out for this kind of shake-up for a number of years.”
A Tesco spokesman said: “As we made clear on 8 January, we will be cutting costs across our head office functions by 30%. These changes are underway - when the consultation process is complete we will provide further information.”