Kate Bailey given expanded remit at Coles

Coles has created a new consolidated role for Kate Bailey, as general manager for brand, digital and media, Mumbrella can reveal.

Bailey has absorbed the duties left vacant by Sam McLeod after she departed the retail giant at the end of 2022, closely following Lisa Ronson’s exit. McLeod was appointed as GM of brand, digital and design in May of 2021.

Bailey has taken on recently departed Sam McLeod’s portfolio of duties

As part of this newly expanded role, Coles’ bespoke agency partner, Smith Street will now report to Bailey.

Bailey currently reports to Leah Weckert, current chief executive, commercial & express, who is set to step up as CEO of Coles on 1 May. She took on the acting head of marketing duties following Ronson’s exit in October.

Coles did not provide a comment on the appointment.

Shifting from her role as general manager for media, sponsorships and events, Bailey’s expanded role sees a shift in Coles’ marketing strategy, with the chief marketing officer role now vacant for more than six months.

It is understood a decision on the role will be made after Weckert takes on the CEO role.

Industry sources suggested the exit of McLeod after Ronson prompted Coles’ executive team to rethink its search for a replacement for Ronson.

Bailey is well-respected within the Coles business, having been with the retailer for 12 years, initially joining as customer insights manager, after a move from the UK where she was in the supermarket chain, Sainsbury’s marketing team.


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