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John Lewis appoints new executive director

John Lewis has announced the appointment of Nina Bhatia as executive director, strategy and commercial development.

Bhatia will commence her role on 17 February, and report to the company’s chairman, Dame Sharon White, as a member of the new executive team.

She will move from her role as managing director of Hive, a connected home business. Prior to this, she led one of British Gas’s home services businesses. She was also a partner at McKinsey and Co. for over 10 years, working with clients in the consumer, energy, healthcare and public sectors. 

The retailer said that Bhatia brings with her “deep strategy experience”, and has an “impressive track record” as a leader in digitally-led businesses and established service organisations. 

News of Bhatia’s appointment comes only one month after the John Lewis Partnership announced its managing director, Paula Nickolds, would step down amid “weak” Christmas sales.

It is also the first appointment made by Dame Sharon White, who commenced her role as chairman on 13 January. 

Bhatia said: “I am delighted to be joining the Partnership. The business’s purpose and its two incredibly strong brands resonate strongly with me. 

“Working with Partners across the business, I look forward to developing a strategy for the Partnership that is relevant to our customers, is built on trust and delivers commercial value.”

White said: “Nina brings tremendous commercial and strategic experience and will play a crucial role as part of the newly-formed Future Partnership executive team.”

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