A top executive at Tesco is to jump ship to rival UK high street retailer Somerfield, it emerged over the weekend.

According to a report in the Sunday Times, Tesco commercial director Colin Smith is leaving the UK’s number one supermarket chain after 20 years.

He recently returned to the UK after a year in the US heading a team of Tesco executives looking at opportunities across the Atlantic.

Smith has been appointed as Somerfield’s trade and marketing director.

According to reports, Somerfield said that Smith would join the company next month. However, an internal communication at Tesco said terms and conditions of Smith’s departure had yet to be finalised.