Sainsbury’s today announces that Paula Nickolds, formerly Managing Director of John Lewis, will join the business in June and will be a member of the Sainsbury’s Operating Board.

In her new role, Paula will be responsible for the commercial success of Sainsbury’s £7.8 billion general merchandise and clothing business which includes Sainsbury’s general merchandise, Argos, Habitat and Tu clothing, all of which are critical to support the retailer’s ambitions in food.

Paula has a wealth of retail experience and was previously at the John Lewis Partnership where she worked for 25 years. She joined John Lewis as a graduate trainee and worked in product, buying, brand and commercial before becoming Managing Director in 2017 until January last year.

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.”

Paula Nickolds said: “I’m excited to be joining Sainsbury’s. It is a retailer with fantastic heritage that is trusted by customers for its great combination of quality and value. It’s an important and dynamic time for the retail sector and I am thrilled to join the team for the next phase of growth and innovation, as well as the opportunity to make a difference to millions of customers’ lives through the much-loved Argos, Habitat and Tu brands.”

Paula takes over from Mike Luck as General Merchandise and Clothing Commercial Director. Mike has decided that now is the time to pursue a career outside of Sainsbury’s, having joined the Graduate scheme 18 years ago. He will be staying with the business until mid-July to ensure a smooth handover with Paula.

Commenting on Mike’s decision to leave Sainsbury’s, Simon Roberts added: “I am really grateful to Mike for leading General Merchandise and Clothing at such a crucial time for the business as we were planning and launching our new strategy. In that time Mike and his team have successfully re-launched Habitat and developed the plan for our next phase of growth, changed our ways of working to deliver a lower cost base across our global commercial team and significantly grown sales in Argos. I would also like to thank him for everything he has achieved over the past 18 years.”

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