•  The Co-op appoints three members to commercial team
The Co-op has added to its senior management team with the appointment of Tesco and Asda executives

The Co-op has added to its senior management team with the appointment of Tesco and Asda executives

UK retailer The Co-operative Group has added to its food management team with the appointment of executives from Tesco and Asda.

Matt Hood will join the Co-op next month as head of commercial trading for dairy, chilled prepared foods and protein. He joins from Tesco where he was group food sourcing director.

Asda executives CJ Antal Smith and Ian Martin are also set to join The Co-op. Antal Smith, category trading director for emerging markets at Asda, will head up the retailer's core grocery, impulse grocery and non-edible grocery categories from February. 

Martin, who most recently headed frozen foods at Asda, will take up the role of head of commercial trading for beers, wines & spirits, tobacco and frozen food at The Co-op.

Mike Osmond, commercial director of The Co-op's food arm, said: "We are embarking on a strategic programme to deliver ambitious commercial trading levels, and I am confident that these key appointments will complement and strengthen our existing commercial and senior management teams."

The appointments come as The Co-op looks to revitalise its food business. Last month, it said falling sales in a "tough" market hit profits from its food arm in the first half. 

The retailer has also seen the retirement of its CEO Peter Marks who will step down next year. He will leave after six years at the helm, during which time he made significant moves including buying UK food retailer Somerfield.

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THE CO-OPERATIVE FOOD STRENGTHENS ITS COMMERCIAL TEAM

The Co-operative Food is strengthening its senior management team with the appointment of three new Heads of Commercial Trading, with a wealth of food trading experience.

The trio, along with the existing senior leadership team, will deliver the retailer's ambitious commercial trading strategy to help drive sales and further enhance the customer experience.

Ian Martin has joined the business to take up the role of Head of Commercial Trading for Beers, Wines and Spirits, Tobacco and Frozen Food. Ian was previously with Asda, where he held a number of category director positions, having progressed from General Store Manager.

From next month, Matt Hood will be Head of Commercial Trading for Dairy, Chilled Prepared Foods and Protein, following a successful career at Tesco, where he was Group Food Sourcing Director.

CJ Antal Smith will be joining from Asda, where she is currently Category Trading Director, Emerging Markets, having started as a graduate. CJ will head up The Co-operative Food's Core Grocery, Impulse Grocery and Non-edible Grocery categories, when she joins the team in February 2013.

Mark Owen, formerly Head of Commercial Chilled and Frozen categories, is the new Head of Commercial Trading for Fuel and Non-food Turnover. Mark will also lead sales development, promotions, third-party relationships and the CRTG buying group.

Mike Owen continues as Head of Commercial Trading for Produce and Bakery, but also takes on temporary responsibility for Core Grocery, Impulse Grocery and Non-edible Grocery until CJ Antal Smith joins the team.

Mike Osmond, who took up the role as Commercial Director, The Co-operative Food, in January, following the appointment of Sean Toal as Food's Chief Operating Officer, said: "We are embarking on a strategic programme to deliver ambitious commercial trading levels, and I am confident that these key appointments will complement and strengthen our existing commercial and senior management teams."

Original source: The Co-operative Group