Rudoe joined Sainsbury’s in July 2011 as director of online before taking on responsibility for leading the supermarket’s digital strategy, including click and collect, mobile and digital entertainment, in March last year. The new position will combine Rudoe’s digital role with the responsibilities of the IT director Rob Fraser after he announced he would leave in March.
The move reflects the rising importance of digital to supermarkets. Sainsbury’s claims its online groceries business is now a £1bn business and its total online sales were up 10 per cent over Christmas.
Sainsbury’s is in competition with Asda to be Britain’s second biggest grocer behind market leader Tesco. The latter updated on its turnaround strategy earlier this week with a strong emphasis on its multichannel operations and investment in digital.
Sainsbury’s also said that property director Neil Sachdev would step down at the end of the financial years after 40 years in the retail industry. He is now looking for new opportunities, including some in a “non-executive capacity”.