Mayhead moves in Argos shake-up

Argos has announced its first major boardroom changes since the 1.9bn hostile takeover by Great Universal Stores three weeks ago.

The restructure by Argos acting chief executive Graham Frost sees John Mayhead move from his position as Argos marketing director. He becomes the director with overall responsibility for Argos Business Solutions, which handles the retailers loyalty card Premier Points.

One retail analyst interprets the change as a sideways move for Mayhead. Richard Perks, of Verdict Research, says: “This is a small part of Argos’ business. During the takeover GUS was quite disparaging about it, saying that Argos was not in control of its customer base.”

But another source points out that Mayhead moves from the Argos Distributors’ board and gains a seat on the Argos plc board in his new post.

Mayhead will be replaced by Paula Vennells, who becomes marketing director as well as taking charge of corporate strategy. Previously, Vennells had been director of business development for the retailer, which has about 400 stores in the UK.

Mayhead replaces Peter Fishbourne, former director of Argos Business Solutions, who has left the company. It is not clear if he has another job to go to.

Frost was previously the deputy chief executive of GUS’ home shopping division. He will manage the integration of Argos as a separate division of GUS until a new chief executive is found to replace Stuart Rose who left once the takeover was confirmed.

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