Waitrose creates director of foodservice postion with current IHG VP to fill role

Waitrose is set to welcome Simon Burdess in a newly-created role of director of foodservice, as the supermarket chain grows it casual dining and on-the-go offer.

Burdess is currently vice president for restaurants and bars at InterContinental Hotels Group, and will join the supermarket in September.

He also has 20 years' experience in the retail industry, having previously been commercial director at Fortnum & Mason and having held various commercial roles at Marks & Spencer, including as category manager for in-store hospitality.

Ben Stimson, retail director at Waitrose, said, 'We want our shops to be places where customers will feel excited by and inspired by food - and evolving our foodservice offer is vital in achieving this. Simon brings a wealth of experience, which will be invaluable in ensuring our hospitality makes our shops dynamic and vibrant places to visit.'

Waitrose currently operates over 120 in-store cafes, along with bakery snacking areas, wine bars, and Sushi Daily counters. Sales growth in this part of its business was running at over 7% last year.

Waitrose has also recently trialled a Supper Club at its store in Haywards Heath and is rolling out The Kitchen, a new counter concept serving hot meals for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Burdess will lead the continued expansion of these activities with Waitrose Retail Director Ben Stimson.