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Primark raids Asda for menswear buying controller

Primark has appointed Steve Coates from George at Asda as buying controller of menswear.

Coates, who will join in August, has been menswear buying manager at George since August 2012.

Drapers understands he will report to menswear buying director Ben Smith. It is thought he was recruited by executive search firm Placement UK, although the company declined to comment. Primark also chose not to comment.

Coates’ departure is not thought to be linked to the restructure that Asda announced last week. It has put 4,100 roles into consultation, including a number at George, as it seeks to make £1bn “efficiency savings” over the next five years.

Asda, which on May 15 announced like-for-like sales growth of 0.1% for the 15 weeks to April 20, was unable to say how many of the roles affected came from the clothing division.

However, a spokesman confirmed the move would result in there being just one section manager for both George and non-food – many stores currently have two.

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