Co-op names acquisitions head

The Co-operative Estates has appointed Robert Bignold from Tesco Stores as head of acquisitions and new store development.

Bignold is due to join the company in the newly-created role on Monday 8 September. He will be field-based but will report to the Co-operative's head office at One Angel Square in Manchester.

Bignold spent the last 16 years with Tesco, most recently as property director for China, and previously as divisional director, where he was responsible for the development of new stores and extensions.

He said: "I was drawn to The Co-operative because of the opportunities that lie ahead, not least ensuring that the acquisitions and store development strategies match the ambition of the business to become the country's leading convenience store retailer. I am looking forward to working with the team to achieve that ambition."

Stuart Hookins, director of portfolio and development for The Co-operative Estates, said: "Our new store development programme is really starting to build some momentum now and Robert's arrival will provide the leadership, experience and focus that a programme targeting 150 new stores a year requires."

The Co-operative announced plans earlier this year to open 100 new Co-operative Food stores in 2014, of between 2,000 sq ft and 4,000 sq ft in high street and local community locations.

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