Musgrave unveils new MD and takeover deal

There was a flurry of activity from Musgrave Group last week as it revealed the identity of MBL’s new managing director and then it bought one of its major competitors in Northern Ireland.

Phil Smith, the commercial and operations director of Camelot, will take over as managing director of Musgrave Great Britain and take a seat on the board of Musgrave Group from September.

Martin Hyson, who has been interim managing director since Mike Taylor’s departure in November 2006, will take up the new Musgrave role of group business development director.

Prior to Camelot, Phil was with Somerfield where he was group marketing director. He previously spent 10 years in leadership roles at Kraft General Foods.

Chris Martin, Musgrave Group CEO, said: “Phil’s combination of experience in food and in retailing makes him ideally suited to build on recent progress and to lead our business in Great Britain over the coming years.”

Smith said: “Musgrave’s unique way of working and supporting retailers, its strong company values and the exciting potential of the business are what attracted me to taking up this challenge. I’m looking forward to working with Budgens and Londis retailers.”

In Northern Ireland Musgrave bought J J Haslett, which supplies almost 200 Mace and 70 XL Stop and Shop stores as well as operating seven Holmes cash and carry outlets. The transaction is subject to regulatory approval in the UK and in the Republic of Ireland which is anticipated in September.

The business had a turnover of pound;192m in the year to 31 December 2006, and employs 360 people at eight locations across Northern Ireland.

On completion of the deal, managing director Michael Hamilton and finance director Ronnie Lewis will leave J J and Martin Kelleher, currently SuperValu sales director in the Republic of Ireland, will become managing director.

Delivered business director Tom Uprichard and trading director Michael Patterson, will remain in their current positions.

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