Dutch retail giant Ahold is to appoint Tesco executive Jesper Lauridsen to head up its operations in the Czech Republic.

Lauridsen, who was appointed sales director for Tesco’s Czech operations in May 2010, is understood to be taking over from Jan van Dam on 1 April. A spokesperson for Ahold declined to provide details on the appointment. An official announcement is due next week, the retailer said.

Van Dam will move to a role within Ahold’s US operations, according to the Czech Economic Times.

The retailer saw its operating profit in the Czech Republic and Slovakia increase 5% in 2012. Comparable-store sales growth, however, was down 2.3%, with revenues in the Czech Republic impacted by “weaker consumer buying power” after an increase in the main VAT rate, Ahold said. 

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