Littlewoods head of marketing takes on mature brands

Littlewoods marketing director Matt Stead has been appointed brand director of mature brands following a restructure at the retailer.

Stead joined Littlewoods last year (MW April 1, 2004) from Marks & Spencer, where he was head of marketing for womenswear. Earlier this year Littlewoods was bought by Associated British Foods (ABF), which decided to convert 40 stores to its Primark brand and sell the 100-plus remaining outlets to rivals.

The announcement left Stead’s role within Littlewoods in doubt (MW July 14). But he has now been put in charge of marketing for the company’s brands aimed at older consumers, such as Marshall Ward. In his new role, Stead will oversee a team of about 20 staff, and report to Littlewoods Shop Direct group chief executive Mark Newton-Jones.

Littlewoods’ stores will continue to trade until January, although a closing-down sale at the chain has now started. ABF has retained retail restructuring specialist Hilco, brought in when the company bought Littlewoods, to manage store operations.

The group has poached Next product operations director Ranj Singh to the newly created role of head of merchandising. Stephanie Morgan, who previously held the joint position of buying and merchandising director, will now be the group’s buying director.

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