Woolworths boss to move on

Retailer Woolworths today revealed the departure of its chief executive and said high street sales fell 2.2% in the first 19 weeks of its financial year.

Woolworths said it had agreed with Trevor Bish Jones that it was the right time to look for new leadership. He will leave in three months’ time after making a “significant contribution” during six years in charge, the chain said.

In a trading update, the company described the 2.2% fall in like-for-like sales at its retail arm as broadly in line with internal expectations.

The company said margins came under pressure during the period because it generated a greater proportion of sales from entertainment products, rather than higher margin sales of warm weather outdoor products and clothing.

It added that its Price Drop promotional campaign would also impact on margins, although this has been offset by a boost to sales volumes.

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