Somerfield axes brand boss

Somerfield brands communications director Alan Shepherd has become the second casualty of the company’s management restructure, following the departure of group marketing director Phil Smith last week.

Shepherd left the struggling chain on Monday, in the wake of the changes which are hoped to restore sales at its failing Kwik Save chain.

The moves mean there will be no group marketing roles at the company. Instead, Somerfield has restructured into four separate divisions, with marketing departments aligned to each.

It follows a drop in sales at Kwik Save stores of 11.1 per cent.

The company had planned to rebrand the chain, with which it merged last year, under the Somerfield name. Chief executive David Simon announced last week that the rebranding plans had been scrapped and that just 450 of the 750-store Kwik Save chain would be converted. The remaining 300 will now remain under the Kwik Save brand.

Last week, group marketing director Phil Smith left the company. His position was also axed in the restructure. It is thought neither marketer has a job to go to.

A Somerfield spokesman says: “There have been a number of changes in senior management. We are restructuring into four divisions and there is no longer a position for a group brands communications director.”

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