David Cooke

Source: AF Blakemore

He took up the newly created role on 7 February 

AF Blakemore has appointed David Cooke as group commercial director.

He took up the newly created role on 7 February and reports to CEO Jerry Marwood.

His role will account for the business’s commercial function, with a focus on developing supplier partnerships, managing commercial trading terms, developing retail propositions, and accelerating the rollout of AF Blakemore’s fresh food strategy.

The new commercial strategy would align with the group’s five-year plan, the wholesaler said. This would see the business invest in key areas such as fresh food solutions and innovation, digital technology and its logistics infrastructure.

“I am pleased to welcome David Cooke to the Blakemore team,” said Marwood. “He brings significant commercial experience in developing strategic relationships with suppliers as well as a background in the development of exciting food propositions.

“David is a great fit for our culture, having been attracted to AF Blakemore because of our values and approach to responsible business.”

Cooke has a background in trading, proposition and product development gained through stints with national and international organisations such as Sainsbury’s, Tesco, and health & beauty retailer AS Watson.

He most latterly held the position of director of food, health and beauty at Dutch store chain Hema, where he oversaw divisions with a combined turnover of circa €500m.