Coles head of communications Jon Church to depart

Jon ChurchThe head of communications for Coles Jon Church is set to leave the supermarket group later this month after more than four years.

Yesterday Coles confirmed it was shedding 438 jobs in Melbourne as part of a restructure of its support functions, with Church confirming his role will not be replaced with his reports now under general manager Alister Jordan.

In an email today Church, who came to Coles after a decade as head of comms for supermarket giant Tesco in the UK,  said he is assessing opportunities in the UK and the US, adding the supermarket has made two new hires with the role of national communications manager taken by someone working at a TV network, and also a national media manger.

In the email Church wrote: “I always intended to see through the turnaround and then consider my options so the recent change in Managing Director and appointment of a new leadership team provides an ideal opportunity to part company, allowing me to focus on the next exciting opportunity.

“I have been talking this through with the new MD, John Durkan, over the last few weeks and given the wider restructuring at the Coles head office (reported in the media today) we agreed that I can step down as Head of Communications later this month.”

Church declined to name who the new hires are.

He added: “The Coles Internal Communications team is world class and the capability in local and consumer communications as well as social media is completely transformed from what we had when I arrived in Australia from Tesco in 2010.  It’s been a fantastic journey and I leave with fond memories, a few battle scars from talk radio and a great appreciation of all things Australian, especially the people who made me and my family feel so welcome.”

Alex Hayes


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