CEO appointed for flybuys

Coles-Flybuys-versus-Woolworths-RewardsWesfarmers and Coles have appointed John Merakovsky to the newly-created chief executive role at flybuys.

Merakovsky is currently the CEO and managing director of Integrated Research (IR), a leading global provider of proactive experience management solutions for IT infrastructure, payments and communications ecosystems.

He announced his resignation from the company yesterday citing plans to return to his home in Melbourne for family reasons.

Merakovsky was previously general manager of SEEK Learning, and before that he was managing director and CEO Australia and New Zealand for Experian.

Merakovsky will work his three month notice period at IR before commencing the new role in February 2019.

Wesfarmers managing director and flybuys chairman Rob Scott said Merakovsky would bring extensive leadership experience in technology and digital companies to the new role.

“John has extensive experience in commercialising technologies and leading companies to achieve their customer strategy through leveraging data and digital capabilities,” Scott said. “This is an important step as flybuys looks to expand its current reach and move into new segments and services for its members.”

Coles managing director Steven Cain said he was confident Merakovsky’s experience would help Coles deliver its strategy to make life easier for customers.

“We’re excited about the next phase of growth and innovation for flybuys and delivering even better value and more relevant offers for Coles’ customers around Australia,” Cain said

flybuys is one of Australia’s most popular loyalty programs with more than eight million active members. It has more than 20 major partners including Coles Supermarkets, Coles Express, First Choice Liquor and Liquorland.

The loyalty and data company is owned and operated by a stand-alone company. Wesfarmers and Coles will continue to each own a 50 per cent share in the company, following the demeger of Coles on November 28.

Coles commences trading on the ASX

Coles commenced trading as an independent company on the ASX today at 11.00am under the new ASX Code ‘COL’. The company was de-listed following Wesfarmers’ acquisition of the Coles Group in 2007.

“We are pleased to be joining the ASX under our own name,” said Coles chairman James Graham.

“Listing Coles on the ASX as a standalone business marks the next phase in the evolution of a company that began as a single store in Collingwood 104 years ago. I speak for the entire board when I say it is an immense privilege to be with Coles for such a milestone, and we thank our 480,000-plus new shareholders for joining us on this journey.”

Coles CEO Steven Cain recognised the impact Wesfarmers had over the past 11 years, transforming Coles into a “world-class supermarket retailer”.

“Our 115,000 team members can take enormous pride that their company is now listed alongside some of the largest and most recognised businesses in Australia,” Cain said.

“We’re all very excited for the next chapter in the Coles story as we deliver on our strategy to make life easier for our customers.”

Coles shares will be transferred to eligible shareholders on November 28 and the shares will trade on a normal settlement basis the following day.

Wesfarmers shares were down 30 per cent, to $30.88 at 11.27 AEDT.



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