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Woolworths CEO Brad Banducci Announces Retirement Amidst Company’s Massive Loss

Woolworth chief executive Brad Banducci has made a shocking decision, announcing his retirement after the supermarket giant reported a whooping loss of $781 million.

Mr Banducci, who has held the top position for almost nine years, will step down in September.

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Woolworths Group Chair, Scott Perkins, expressed gratitude for Banducci’s leadership, citing his role in the remarkable turnaround and transformation of the group. 

“Brad has led a remarkable turnaround and transformation of the Group,” Woolworths Group chair Scott Perkins said in a statement to the Australian share market. 

The departure of Banducci coincides with the appointment of Amanda Bardwell to the top position after an extensive international search process. 

Bardwell, who has been with the company for 23 years, currently oversees the online grocery, e-commerce, and loyalty sub-division, WooliesX.

The announcement of Banducci’s retirement comes on the heels of Woolworths Group releasing its profit results, which painted a mixed picture for the retail giant. 

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The company reported a staggering loss of $781 million, primarily attributed to a $NZ1.6 billion writedown in the value of its New Zealand grocery business and a $209 million reduction in the value of its stake in ASX-listed alcohol and hotels spin-off, Endeavour. 

However, excluding these one-off charges, Woolworths revealed a 2.5 per cent rise in half-year profit to $929 million, with a 4.4 per cent increase in revenue compared to the previous year.

Despite the financial turmoil, Woolworths’ Australian food sales saw a robust increase of 5.4 per cent in the first half, accompanied by a notable 9.9 per cent jump in pre-tax profits within the same division. 

A significant portion of this profit growth was attributed to WooliesX, where first-half total sales surged by 27.5 per cent, and pre-tax profits soared by 132.3 per cent to $168 million. 

Sales of home brands and exclusive products also experienced a healthy uptick of 6.8 per cent.

However, amidst these financial gains, Woolworths continues to grapple with allegations of price gouging and unfair practices with suppliers alongside its competitor, Coles.

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