Marks & Spencer’s former clothing boss Jill McDonald, who was sacked by the retailer in July, has been appointed Costa Coffee’s new chief executive.Costa, which was bought by Coca-Cola for £3.9bn last year, announced on Wednesday that Ms McDonald will replace current boss Dominic Paul at the end of the month.
Mr Paul was praised for leading the chain through a “strong growth phase” following the takeover from Whitbread, that was agreed last August.Ms McDonald said: “I have long been a fan of Costa and have watched the company grow in the UK and far beyond.”I look forward to joining the Costa leadership team and building on the great foundation and growth potential in the business.”
Before her almost two-year stint at M&S in charge of fashion and home sales, Ms McDonald was chief executive at Halfords and is also a former UK boss of McDonald’s.
Ms McDonald, who had no fashion retail experience before joining M&S as managing director of clothing and home, left abruptly last year.
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She was unable to reverse a decline in fashion sales that predated her arrival, but which was made more difficult during her tenure, as shoppers curbed their spending.Jennifer Mann, president of global ventures for Coca-Cola, said: “I am excited to welcome Jill to the Costa family.”Her track record, depth of international experience and excitement about joining our business makes her an ideal leader to build on the great work of Dominic and the rest of the Costa team.”Dominic led a significant reshaping of Costa’s international footprint, the expansion of the brand across multiple new platforms and a wide-ranging reset of the core UK business strategy.”
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