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Coles announces executive leadership team transition

Coles Group Limited has announced a number of changes to the executive leadership team that will take effect over the next five months.

Chief Executive, Commercial & Express

Leah Weckert, currently Chief Financial Officer (CFO), will be appointed Chief Executive, Commercial & Express, and will assume the role in April 2022.

Ms Weckert joined Coles in 2011 and was appointed CFO in March 2018, having held a number of leadership roles across Coles in merchandise, operations, human resources and strategy.

During her time as CFO, Ms Weckert has successfully led the finance, treasury, strategy, business development and investor relations functions, including playing a significant role in the demerger of Coles from Wesfarmers.

In her new role as Chief Executive, Commercial & Express, Ms Weckert will lead Coles Supermarket’s Business Units and Own Brand teams, as well as the Coles Express business.

Greg Davis, currently Chief Executive, Commercial & Express, will continue in his role to ensure a smooth handover to Ms Weckert in the new year.

Mr Davis has decided this is the right time to take the next step in his career and will be leaving Coles following the handover.

Chief Financial Officer

Following an internal and external search process, Charlie (Sharbel Raymond) Elias has been appointed to succeed Leah Weckert as CFO.

Mr Elias will join Coles on 1 December 2021 and will work through a transition period with Ms Weckert before assuming the role of CFO on 28 February 2022, following the release of Coles’ FY22 half year results.

Mr Elias has extensive finance and executive leadership experience. Most recently, Mr Elias was CEO of BlueScope Building Products Asia and North America.

Prior to that role, Mr Elias was CFO of BlueScope Limited where his executive responsibilities included corporate finance, treasury, investor relations, M&A, audit and insurance.

Mr Elias’ previous roles have included CFO and Executive Director for Linfox Group, and CFO and Head of Strategy & Business Development for TXU Australia.

“Leah’s knowledge of the business, our sector and the broader market will be important in the role of Chief Executive, Commercial & Express. We wish her continued success as she develops her career at Coles,” said Coles’ chief executive officer and managing director, Steven Cain.

“I am also delighted to welcome Charlie to Coles. Charlie’s broad executive experience and deep financial knowledge in large scale organisations, and projects, will be invaluable to Coles as we continue to execute our strategy to ‘win in our second century’.

“Finally, I would like to thank Greg for his valuable contribution to the growth and success of the business since he joined Coles in 2009, which included delivering on our refreshed strategy in his current role and leading Coles as chief operating officer through the demerger. We thank him and wish him well in his future endeavours.”

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