Tesco executive Matt Simister returns as supermarket restructures top team in aftermath of profits overstatement

 
Catherine Neilan
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Tesco: Matt Simister, who had stepped aside for the investigation, will return next week (Source: Getty).
Tesco has restructured its top team in the wake of its profit overstatement, with one of the executives who stepped aside during the investigation into its accounting irregularities returning to the company.
Matt Simister, who was one of several executives to step aside in September, will return to his role as group food sourcing director next Monday (December 8).
Tesco chief executive Dave Lewis said he was “delighted” about his return.
“We asked Matt to step aside to facilitate our recent investigation into commercial income recognition,” he explained. “During our work it became clear that Matt, in fact, worked tirelessly to resolve the issues we faced. Matt is one of our most capable leaders, and I am confident his leadership will support our agenda in commercial going forward.”
However it is thought that UK managing director Chris Bush has permanently left the company.
Although Tesco would not comment on individuals, it announced today that chief executive Dave Lewis is taking on the “day to day leadership of the UK operation”, which previously sat within Bush's remit.
Bush had been at Tesco's UK arm since March 2012.
Three other executives – Kevin Grace, Carl Rogberg and John Scouler – are also thought to have left the company, according to widespread reports.
Grace was previously group commercial director, and had been at Tesco since 1982. Jason Tarry, who was previously head of Tesco's clothing arm F&F, has been appointed head of commercial for the UK and the group.
Tesco revealed a number of other changes to its top team.
Chief customer officer Jill Easterbrook will lead what it calls “the business transformation programme” and Tesco Bank chief executive Benny Higgins is taking on additional responsibility for group strategy.
Robin Terrell , group multichannel director, is becoming head of customer, while Rebecca Shelley, corporate affairs director, is leading corporate communications.
As a result, Matt Atkinson's role as chief creative officer and David Hobbs' position as group business planning and strategy director are “no longer needed”, Tesco said.
The changes will come into being from January 1.
The Serious Fraud Office is currently investigating the profits overstatement, which created a £263m black hole in the supermarket's most recent set of accounts.

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