Smiths News has recruited former Tesco director Deborah Rabey to sit on the wholesaler’s board as an independent non-executive director from 1 March.
The position represents Rabey’s second new role in under a fortnight, having been named Wilko’s interim chief customer officer in mid-February.
A more than two-decade Tesco veteran, she most recently held the role of category director for general merchandise, which included overseeing the supermarket’s newspaper and magazine categories.
Commenting on Rabey’s appointment, Smiths News chairman David Blackwood said it would help the wholesaler’s recent focus on diversifying beyond its core revenue stream of supplying newspapers and magazines. Blackwood explained: “Her expertise and insights within the retail sector and, more generally, as a commercial director will further enhance the skills and experience of the Board at a time when the Company is seeking to further develop its ancillary revenue opportunities.”
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Smiths News’ ongoing ‘ancillary revenue opportunities’ include Smiths News Recycling, renting out depot space to firms such as NewsTeam Group and investing in digital magazine seller MyMags.
Smiths News ancillary revenue opportunities underway also include distributing DVDs into Tesco and other supermarkets, a scheme which began during Rabey’s time as general merchandise category director at Tesco, and saw both Smiths News deliver more than 50,000 copies into the supermarket’s sites in partnership with magazine distributors.
Commenting on her appointment, Deborah Rabey added: “I’m very excited to be joining Smiths News at this time. I believe the foundations of the business and its prospects are strong and I look forward to helping the board deliver its goal of meeting the interests of all stakeholders and continuing to deliver shareholder value.”
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