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Ex-Myer CEO Joins Kaufland

Former Myer Chief Executive, Richard Umbers, has reportedly taken the helm at German discount department store, Kaufland, just a year after his shock departure from the Australian icon.

Kaufland is tipped to follow the footsteps of fellow German retailer, ALDI, with Australian competitors bracing themselves against an initial $459 million investment.

Competing with Big W and Kmart, Kaufland is renowned as a top seller of affordable appliances across Europe, and is tipped to take on Kogan.com.

Kaufland Australia is currently building a behemoth VIC distribution centre, and has reportedly won planning approval for its first three local outlets – Melbourne’s Chirnside Park, Dandenong and Epping.

According to Inside RetailMr Umbers joined Kaufland in February, and is based out of the company’s German HQ.

Umbers is reportedly not directly involved in Kaufland Australia’s launch, however, the company asserts it’s grateful for his insight to the market. He is responsible in part for international buying and sourcing.

Prior experience includes tenure at ALDI North West and Ireland, coupled with Woolworths Group New Zealand.

As previously reported, in February last year Umbers departed from Myer, with Gary Hounsell appointed Executive Chairman with immediate effect.

His successor is former House of Fraser boss, John King, who took the reigns in June 2018.

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