NEWS: Sainsbury’s plans major PR overhaul

Sainsbury’s is looking for a director of corporate communications as part of a major overhaul of its PR and public affairs operation.

Sainsbury’s is looking for a director of corporate communications as

part of a major overhaul of its PR and public affairs operation.



The retail giant is believed to be searching externally for someone of

the same rank as current director of corporate communications Chris

Lever - who will, however, remain with the company.



It is understood that under the new structure, Lever will take charge of

internal communications, with the new recruit managing public affairs,

consumer PR and corporate communications.



Staff for the unit are likely to be drawn both from Lever’s existing

group and from areas outside his remit, such as environmental

communication.



Lever, who is believed to be retaining his seniority, reports to

marketing director Kevin McCarten, who joined from Kingfisher on January

2.



The move is believed to have been prompted by a wide-ranging review into

Sainsbury’s communications function, commissioned last summer by

McCarten’s predecessor Ivor Hunt (PR Week 4 August). Hunt is due to

retire on March 9.



Previous review spin-offs have included the establishment of a new in-

house PR division for Sainsbury’s Homebase and Texas DIY chains, under

former corporate issues senior manager Tim Johns, and the promotion of

consumer public relations head Diane Lamb to head the press office. Both

Johns’ and Lamb’s previous jobs are still vacant.



A Sainsbury’s spokesman declined to comment on, or confirm, the latest

communications department changes.



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