Sally Macdonald resigns as CEO of Big W

Sally MacdonaldSally Macdonald has resigned as chief executive officer of discount department store Big W.

Woolworths confirmed the resignation in an announcement today. David Walker, who became CEO of the now defunct Home Improvement arm that included the failed Masters hardware chain, will become acting CEO of Big W.

Walker has 18 years of experience in retail, including a prior role at Big W in the company’s supply chain.

“Since joining Big W in January 2016, Sally has made material progress in restructuring the business, especially in the areas of direct sourcing, product development, supply chain, business simplification and cost reduction,” said Brad Banducci, CEO and MD, Woolworths.

“However, despite these and other positive changes, it is apparent that the transformation of Big W will take three to five years to complete and, unfortunately, this time horizon is inconsistent with Sally’s expectation when she joined Big W.”

Big W saw sales decrease 5.5 per cent based on the previous year to $880 million in Woolies’ recent first quarter results. The company said it expects “modest improvement in apparel sales in the second half as we transition to directly sourced and designed product.”

Comparable sales decreased 5.7 per cent for Big W, which Woolies attributed to being impacted by “significant SKU reduction and clearance activities in deleted lines as well as a reduction in the number of unprofitable promotions.”

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