- David McNair, Sainsbury's brand marketing director, has been named among 300 who are to be made redundant at the UK food retailer's London headquarters.
McNair was directly responsible for advertising at the troubled supermarket chain. Sainsbury's recently switched its TV advertising account out of its 20-year incumbent, Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO, following the failure of its notorious "value to shout about" campaign starring John Cleese.
However, Kevin McCarten, the Sainsbury's marketing director whose position was also said to be threatened by the poor performance of the advertising, remains in place. Observers now believe his future will depend on the success of new TV advertising currently in development with M&C Saatchi.
The 300 jobs being axed represent 10 per cent of Sainsbury's head office workforce and come on heels of up to 230 job losses announced earlier this week, which result from plans to integrate the group's Savacentre unit with its main head office.
News of the redundancies came as Sainsbury's derided its own latest sales growth figures as "unacceptable". Sales growth rose 2.4 per cent in the nine weeks to 3 April, but that growth was only 1.2 percent when the effects of an earlier Easter than last year were discounted.
In a statement, Dino Adriano, chief executive at Sainsbury's, said: "The level of sales growth at Sainsbury's supermarkets is not acceptable. After promising first-half sales, a combination of softening market conditions and a tough competitive environment in UK food retailing resulted in a sales performance during the latter part of the year below our internal expectations and external targets."
Adriano said the company would shed the 300 jobs to cut costs.