Matalan picks former chief for ‘value’ task

Matalan is employing its former advertising chief to head its marketing output and to push its value message.

Claire Bayliss, formerly known as Bulman, is leaving her role as head of marketing and direct sales for Alliance & Leicester Commercial Bank to return to the value retailer at the end of February.

Her move coincides with a trading statement made by the retailer this week showing a 5.3 per cent jump in like-for-like sales in the ten weeks to January, in contrast to the 8.2 per cent drop the previous Christmas.

As marketing controller, Bayliss will be responsible for marketing at the retailer and report to trading director Adrian Porteous, who has been looking after marketing following the departure of Gerry Murphy last year (MW November 18, 2004).

Murphy quit Matalan shortly after appointing Euro RSCG to handle advertising for the brand. His departure followed that of Euan Sutherland, who left his position as retail operations director in charge of marketing in August last year to become chief operating officer at Superdrug.

Porteous says Bayliss will be tasked with helping Matalan get back in touch with its marketing roots: “Over time under different management, marketing lost touch with the business in terms of losing that value message.”

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