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Former Focus DIY boss Steve Johnson to take the hotseat from September 1st

Woolworths announces new chief executive

Woolworths has announced the appointment of Steve Johnson as chief executive with effect from 1st September.

He replaces Trevor Bish-Jones, who left in June after more than six years seeking to resolve the group’s difficulties.

Johnson, 44, joins from Focus DIY, where he held a post as chief executive for four years until July 2007.

Previously he had worked for GUS, for Asda in a variety of roles and in consulting at The Kalchas Group and Bain & Company. Steve is currently a non-executive director of the Unipart Group of Companies Ltd.

During his time at Focus, Johnson successfully instigated a renewal strategy designed to grow sales, enhance margins and reduce costs.

This was achieved through a re-alignment of the price proposition, a review of the trading formats, an overhaul of the supply chain, the amalgamation of three head office locations and a reduction in central overheads.

Richard North, Chairman of Woolworths, said: "We are delighted that Steve will be joining Woolworths. With his strong background in both retail and consultancy, together with his particular experience in achieving a turnaround at Focus, he brings the strategic and operational skills that the Group needs to help it move to the next stage of its development.”

Johnson said: "I am very excited to be joining the Group. Woolworths is a well-loved high street brand operating in attractive markets, while the EUK and 2 entertain businesses have grown to hold market-leading position in their respective markets."

This story originally appeared on our sister site Toy News.

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