Boss of Jarrold department store made redundant
PUBLISHED: 10:22 21 August 2020 | UPDATED: 14:54 21 August 2020
The boss of Norwich’s famous department store Jarrold, Minnie Moll, has been made redundant and will leave the business immediately.
Former chief executive Ms Moll, who took over as the boss of the store in 2018, said: “All I can really say is that I am very, very sad to be leaving.”
The shock news of Ms Moll’s departure comes after she announced back in June that Jarrold had taken the decision to reduce employment costs by 20pc.
Jarrold’s chairman David Hill told this newspaper: “We can confirm that Minnie Moll has left the business following a restructure of our executive team brought about by the impact of the current Covid-19 crisis on the high street.
“The restructure included making the role of chief executive redundant. This is no reflection on the outstanding contribution Minnie has made to the business and the leadership she has shown in her time at Jarrold. We are very sad to see her go and she leaves with our sincere thanks and best wishes.”
Ms Moll said back in June the store had suffered its “toughest year in retail” because of coronavirus, losing £1m in three months of closure.
Ms Moll took over as chief executive at the start of August 2018, leaving her position as joint chief executive of the East of England Co-op to succeed Peter Mitchell at the family store with the task of leading it in its 250th anniversary this year.
She joined at a difficult time after the “beast from the east” snow storms and then a summer heatwave but was confident in the future for Jarrold saying at the time: “I don’t think the department store is dead.”
But she could never have foreseen coronavirus and its impact on the high street.
In June Ms Moll stood on the door herself welcoming back customers when the store reopened but just 10 days later she also had the task of relaying news to staff that redundancies were ahead. Jarrold has now competed the consultation process.
In an email to staff announcing the planned job cuts she said: “The timing of this feels really unfair. We were on a roll. It’s our 250th anniversary. It feels like Jarrold should somehow be immune, that our very spirit and heart and sense of family should protect us – but I’m afraid it can’t.
“This pandemic has been indiscriminate in the way that it has impacted individuals and businesses alike. We will survive this. But we wouldn’t if we didn’t make tough decisions now that are necessary for the future of the business.”
Minnie Moll came to the role of chief executive at Jarrold with impeccable credentials, having been joint CEO at the East of England Co-op previously. Her career in retail and marketing over more than 25 years saw her climb the ladder of success from being an account director for a marketing agency after leaving university to becoming managing partner of the agency which brought us the famous adverts like “You’ve been tangoed” for Tango and Ronseal’s “It does what it says on the tin’.
Ms Moll then went on to become a global marketing director for innovation firm What If? before becoming an executive director for Notcutts. She left that after being appointed by Prince Charles to become the ambassador for his Responsible Business in the East of England campaign before getting the joint top job at the East of England Co-op.
She believed traditional stores like Jarrold must offer the shopper an experience and under her reign the shop expanded its food and drink offering, opening a seafood restaurant last year.
Ms Moll was born in Norwich and then grew up on a Thames Sailing Barge in Suffolk. She moved back to East Anglia more than a decade ago and lives in the Waveney valley with her husband, twin daughters and her pets.
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