Former John Lewis managing director Paula Nickolds has joined Sainsbury’s to lead the supermarket’s general merchandise and clothing business.
Nickolds left John Lewis in January last year, after 25 years with the firm, as the department store chain issued a profit warning.
She had been set to become executive director of brand and marketing as well as service and digital innovation across the group as part of its leadership structure shakeup.
However, the board and Nickolds had a change of heart before she took up the job.
At Sainsbury’s she will be responsible for its £7.8bn general merchandise unit, including Argos, Habitat and Tu clothing.
Nickolds will replace Mike Luck as general merchandise and clothing commercial director. Luck is leaving the firm in July after joining the supermarket’s graduate scheme 18 years ago.
Simon Roberts, Sainsbury’s chief executive, said: “I am delighted that Paula is joining us, she is a highly respected, talented and experienced retail leader.
“I am certain that under her leadership, our brands that deliver – Argos, Habitat and Tu – will continue to delight our customers and support everything we are doing in food.
!Paula brings deep experience in product, brands and commercial leadership and she has a passion for understanding and delivering for customers. We are all looking forward to her joining our team.”