Asda promotes Bendel in top management reshuffle

Asda has promoted Rick Bendel from marketing director to chief marketing officer in a senior management reshuffle announced ahead of today’s 4th quarter results announcement (February 17).

The supermarket revealed this afternoon its like for like sales increased by 6.5% in 2008, and were up 7.2% in the fourth quarter excluding petrol sales.

Bendel joined the supermarket in 2006 from advertising group Publicis, which had handled the Asda account for 18 years. After Bendel was appointed he moved the then £45m business to Publicis sister agency Fallon.

The supermarket has returned to emphasising its value credentials under Bendel’s stewardship, and it recently responded to consumer sentiment by announcing it was cutting celebrities out of its advertising in favour of real-life inhabitants of a Yorkshire village.

The reshuffle also sees retail director Andy Clarke become chief operating officer and group trading director Darren Blackhurst change his title to chief merchandising officer.

The changes bring the supermarket’s management structure more in-line with US parent Wal-Mart’s senior set-up.

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