Focus marketing director departs

Focus marketing director Sue Gosling has suddenly left the DIY retailer after only eight months in the role.

Her departure coincides with the news that holding company Focus Wickes is considering a possible trade sale to a rival.

It is not known whether Gosling, who had previously worked at Powerhouse, has a job to go. A spokeswoman for the company refuses to elaborate on the circumstances behind her departure, but a statement issued by managing director Steve Johnson last Wednesday says that Gosling left the business “with immediate effect”.

Gosling, who has also worked in senior marketing roles with Comet and Allied Carpets, effectively replaced Jill Keen, who last worked for Focus in autumn last year. Focus store development director Paul Willis will temporarily take on additional responsibility for marketing.

Focus Wickes, which has 420 stores operating under the Focus and Wickes brands, is partly owned by private equity groups Duke Street and Apax Partners. Goldman Sachs is helping the company, which tried and failed to float in 2002 owing to turbulent market conditions, look at various divestment options. Homebase, B&Q and US retailer Home Depot are all understood to have shown an interest in buying all or part of Focus Wickes.

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