Booker revamps trading

One of the best known figures in the wholesale industry will be leaving Booker as the result of restructuring of the company’s trading team.

Shaun Birrell’s role as trading director has been removed and he is now working as a trading consultant for the company on a number of projects that are expected to take about six months to complete. Four other members of the trading team, who have not been named, have also left the business.

The restructuring has produced a much flatter management structure than previously, reducing it from five tiers to three. Prior to the change, the chain of command rose through buyers, buying controllers, directors of trading, and the trading director reporting to commercial director Brian Drew.

Now the role of buying controller has been removed with all controllers and buyers retitled category managers. Category managers will report to directors of trading and they will report directly to Drew.

As part of the changes Colm Johnson has been appointed director of trading – retail, Steve Keil, is the new director of trading – regional, and Steve Roper will become director of trading – drinks and tobacco. Andrew Thompson remains as director of trading – catering.

Drew said the changes were intended to improve efficiency and speed up decision making.

The restructuring is seen as the completion of the first phase of chief executive Charles Wilson’s three-step recovery plan which he revealed at the FWD’s Annual Conference.

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