Asda shops at Sainsbury for new boss

By Laurence Gibbons

- Last updated on GMT

Burnley will join Asda next year
Burnley will join Asda next year

Related tags Chief operating officer Supply chain director Supermarket Asda

Asda has shopped at Sainsbury for its new chief operating officer Roger Burnley.

Burnley, who is currently retail and operations director at Sainsbury, will not officially join Asda until next year because he is employed by a direct competitor.

His appointment will complete Asda’s search for a chief operating officer, which began in January when the retailer’s president and ceo Andy Clarke made changes to the executive board.

It will be the third time Clarke and Burnley have worked together, as they have both held roles at Matalan and Asda.

Clarke said he was looking forward to having Burnley as his deputy, this time.

‘Couldn’t have got anybody better’

“We couldn’t have got anybody with a better retail pedigree than Roger, particularly because he is a former colleague,”​ Clarke said.

“These are times of unprecedented turbulence for our industry. Whilst we are not immune from the effects of this, we are fortunate to be part of a healthy, sustainable business with a clear strategy for success.

“Adding Roger to Asda’s executive team further strengthens the board which, I believe, is now one of the most experienced and capable in the industry.” 

Burnley initially worked at Asda between 1996 and 2002, latterly as supply chain director. He was also part of the core team responsible for integrating Asda into Walmart following the acquisition in 1999.

Career history

The former Matalan supply chain director joined Sainsbury in 2006 in the same position before becoming retail and logistics director.

He was then appointed md for Sainsbury’s general merchandise, clothing and logistics in 2012 and became retail and logistics director in 2014.

Burnley is also currently on the board of Transport for London and its Surface Transport Panel.

Meanwhile, the boss of grocery think tank IGD Joanne Denney-Finch told retailers and food manufacturers needed to adapt to a “huge cultural shift”​ in consumer shopping behaviour.

Watch our exclusive video with Denney-Finch to find out what action she said food and drink businesses should take.

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