Oddbins head buyer quits

17 October, 2007

Emma Nichols, Oddbins’ widely-respected head buyer, has left the business just days after returning from maternity leave amid a shake-up of the British off-licence chain’s buying department.

She said the decision had been sudden, but stressed it was in the best interests of both herself and Oddbins.

She told OLN: “It’s a good time for me to go and do something different and there are going to be some changes within the buying department. My role wouldn’t necessarily have been the same.”

Her departure will prompt renewed speculation that Oddbins and Nicolas will bring their buying functions together. This year, Nicolas in Paris has been given the task of sourcing the chain’s French wines, based on briefings provided by Nichols’s team.

Managing director Fabrice Bidault said he was “sad” to see Nichols leave. “I would to thank Emma for the contribution she has made since rejoining the company almost three years ago,” he added.

Nichols said that Oddbins retained its enthusiasm and commitment to wine retailing, even though it was operating in a harsher environment than in the past.

Asked what her next career move would be, she said: “I really haven’t got an agenda at the moment. I remain committed to the wine trade and there are a lot of areas of it I haven’t worked in.”

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