Asda revamps commercial model to support express store growth plans

Asda is introducing a new commercial operating model to support its long-term growth plans, including a "significant" expansion of its convenience store format.

The move ultimately aims to help the supermarket reach its goal of becoming the UK’s second-largest grocery retailer, a position which is currently held by Sainsbury’s.

Last year, Asda announced it would create 10,000 new roles over a four-year period as part of a nationwide roll out of its express store concept.

The supermarket plans to open 300 convenience stores by the end of 2026.

The new model, which is being rolled out immediately, is made up of eight integrated business units aligned to specific categories and led by a business unit director who has full responsibility for sales and profitability in their area.

Within each unit there will be dedicated teams responsible for buying, ranging and pricing. This replaces a current structure whereby these responsibilities are split across multiple functions.

The retailer revealed that as part of the plans it would invest in 36 new positions, including an extra 28 buying roles to give it additional capacity and capability in this area.

The change will also result in around 37 redundancies, predominantly from the category planning, modular planning and supply functions.

Asda said that by embedding responsibilities into category-specific business units, this will allow “teams to act with greater agility and respond better to customer needs".

“We are introducing a new commercial structure to ensure that our teams are in the best position to support Asda’s long-term growth ambitions, which include significant expansion in the convenience and foodservice markets,” said Kris Comerford, chief commercial officer, Asda. “The move to a more agile way of working, with simpler processes and extra investment in key areas like buying, will help strengthen our relationships with suppliers and ultimately deliver better outcomes for our customers too.”

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