Threshers acting chief exits firm

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The company behind Threshers has shaken up its board and invested £10m, in an effort to turn around the struggling off-licence group.

First Quench Retailing (FQR), which operates the 1,400 Threshers, The Local and Wine Rack fascias, said that its acting chief executive, Martin Healy, had resigned to "pursue other business interests". FQR has hired Martin Boden, who joins from Genus, as chief financial officer.

Threshers has also promoted Johan Van de Steen from chairman to executive chairman, and hired John Cleland, the former chief operating officer of Somerfield, as a non-executive director to the board.

The off-licence group has been suffering from product shortages in its stores after credit insurers scaled back cover to suppliers. Some franchisees have complained that they have not been receiving sufficient stock to fill their shelves. As part of its turnaround plan, FQR said the new investment would help to improve its customer offer, ranging, availability and operational efficiencies. Since Vision Capital bought Thresher Wine Holdings in July 2007, it has injected a total of £105m into the struggling group.

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