High Street

Co-op announces David McKnight as new director

The Co-operative has confirmed the appointment of David McKnight as new managing director of the Federal Retail and Trading Services.

The FRTS acts as the buying group for independent Co-ops, and is owned by the Co-op group and independent retail Co-op societies. It serves over 4,000 outlets in the group.

As managing director, McKnight will head up the commercial buying operation and separate logistics team that lies at the heart of the FRTS.

Over the last 17 years, McKnight has worked across various divisions at Tesco, where he joined as category director in 2002. He went on to lead several categories in the chain, including healthcare, household and grocery.

Most recently, McKnight was appointed as strategy and trading director at Tesco, where he lead commercial strategy across price, promotions and range, as well as overseeing the company’s food trade and events plan. 

John Coombs, chair of FRTS, said: “We are delighted to announce David’s appointment. He brings a vast wealth of understanding and experience of UK and international grocery retailing to a role which is pivotal in ensuring societies work cooperatively to maximise scale and value. 

“Combining the day to day operations, governance and strategic direction which is key to underpinning and building on the success and strong growth performance that has been enjoyed by all UK Co-op societies over the past five years.”

McKnight said: “I am delighted to be joining FRTS. Co-operation is key to this role, and something I believe is more relevant today than ever. I am really looking forward to working closely with the Co-op Group and all the independent retail Co-op societies. 

He added: “It is an exciting and unique opportunity which supports the success of the sector, and the creation of value and real co-operative differences in our communities.”

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