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George recruits pair of directors

George at Asda has bolstered its senior management team and taken the Asda Living concept under its wing, after launching the supermarket clothing brand online this week.

George has appointed Roger McLaughlin to the newly created role of retail director and Jo Whitfield has been recruited as finance director for the clothing brand and Asda’s Living concept, which sells non-food items including clothes.

McLaughlin, who has previously held roles at Marks & Spencer and footwear business Stylo Group and is also a former chief executive of homeware retailer Floors-2-Go, will join George next week. Whitfield has joined from Matalan where she was finance controller.

George managing director Anthony Thompson told Drapers that he has finalised his senior management team, which also includes brand director Fiona Lambert and merchandise director Andrew Moore. "It’s a strong team and now the Living stores report to me too," he said. "Roger is an experienced leader and retailer, with great pedigree in clothing and footwear. He is passionate about driving the business forward."

Asda said it would double the number of Living stores by the end of this year, with the potential for 200 stores in the long term. It currently has 16.

George also launched its clothing range online this week, as part of its new Asda Direct website. The retailer is trialling the George offer by selling selected parts of the range, with a view to launching the full range by the end of the year.

Thompson said: "We're slowly testing it and building up the site. Once we’re happy, we’ll go to market with it much more aggressively."

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