Supermarket chain Sainsbury’s has appointed a new head of Northern Ireland operations focused solely on its stores in the province.
Neil Chason, a former regional operations manager in the North East of England, took up the same role for Northern Ireland earlier this month.
He replaces David Davidson, who retains responsibility for stores in Scotland.
Sainsbury’s said it needed a dedicated Northern Ireland operations manager after adding three news stores in the last 18 months — Dungannon, west Belfast and Carrickfergus.
It also has supermarkets planned for Bangor, Dundonald and Londonderry, and is making a £5m investment in its Newry store.
Mr Chason said: “ Within a very short timeframe our employee base has risen from 2,500 full time employees to over 3,000. Sainsbury’s is now a major NI employer.
“I believe that Northern Ireland is now one of the most exciting Sainsbury’s regions in the UK and I am very much looking forward to joining with my Northern Ireland colleagues.”
The new Northern Ireland manager joined Sainsbury’s in 1981. He was deputy operations manager in Manchester and Lancashire in 2002 and Loss Prevention Manager for Northern England, Scotland and Northern Ireland between 2003 and 2004.