Countdown has announced that managing director Natalie Davis will leave the New Zealand business at the end of September, taking up a new role as managing director of Woolworths Supermarkets in Australia in October. Her new role will lead Woolworths 995 Australian supermarkets and 115,000 store team members.
Davis has held the New Zealand managing director role for two years. In this time she has led the growth of Woolworths New Zealand, worked to deliver improvements across customer, brand and reputation, and also rapidly grown the CountdownX business, especially in e-commerce.
“It has been such an incredible time for me in New Zealand, and my family and I are sad to leave. The opportunity to lead Woolworths Supermarkets, as well as to be closer to my family in Sydney, meant that moving home now was the right thing to do," said Davis.
“I’d like to thank our amazing team members and the New Zealand supplier community for welcoming me so warmly. I have been privileged to see a lot of this beautiful country, but also to meet our frontline team, growers and local suppliers across New Zealand, and see first-hand the passion and care you demonstrate every day.
“I’m proud that together we’ve been able to do some great things like remove a million plastic bags a day from circulation, and provide unwavering support for our customers when times were tough. No-one could have ever predicted the pressure on our store teams and supply chain that we have experienced this year, and I’m truly humbled by the way our team responded - implementing stringent safety measures across our stores, rapidly expanding our online capacity to serve vulnerable Kiwis, and closely collaborating with our suppliers to supply food and groceries including fantastic NZ fresh product into all of the 182 communities we serve across New Zealand. To our team, customers and suppliers - thank you!”
An announcement on the appointment of a new managing director will be made in the coming weeks. In the interim, Sally Copland, general manager brand and CountdownX, will step into the role of acting managing director.