HR chief of Asda quits in latest management change

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The Independent Online

Asda’s head of human resources has left after just over a year at the grocer, marking the latest reshuffle of its top team.

In a memo sent out earlier this month, Walmart-owned Asda said that Chet Kuchinad had quit his role of people director to “look for opportunities elsewhere in Europe”.

Asda said it was close to unveiling a successor for one of the biggest HR jobs in retail.

His departure is the latest in a series of changes at Asda, following Andy Clarke, its former chief operating officer, becoming the grocer’s chief executive last May.

Mr Clarke has brought in Walmart veteran Charles Redfield as chief merchandising officer, a former Tesco executive Simon King as chief operating officer, and Sainsbury’s ex-clothing director Sara Bradley as its head of buying for menswear and childrenswear at its George clothing division.

Those who are leaving Asda are Doug Gurr, the development director, and Andy Bond, the grocer’s former chairman, who will exit Walmart at the end of March.

According to the memo, Mr Kuchinad informed Asda in the middle of last year that he “missed the wider international remit he’s had in previous roles and that he wanted to look for opportunities elsewhere in Europe”. Asda said he had stayed in place until “we were close to announcing a successor which is a matter of weeks away”.

Mr Kuchinad joined Asda in October 2009 having previously been executive vice-president of HR at Starbucks Coffee Company in Seattle. Before Starbucks, he had held senior HR roles with Nike and McDonald’s.