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Tesco has announced a shakeup at the top of its international business, as the UK’s largest grocer looks to focus its overseas efforts on a few key markets as part of its turnround plans.

Trevor Masters, chief executive of Tesco International, will leave the business after 40 years at the company at the end of May. Rather than appoint a direct replacement, Tesco announced the appointment of Tony Hoggett and Matt Simister as chief executives for Asia and Central Europe respectively.

Like Mr Masters, Mr Hoggett and Mr Simister are both Tesco veterans, having worked for the group since the 1990s.

Tesco said the new roles are part of efforts to give “greater focus to the two parts of our international business” following the sale of its Turkish unit last year.

Weak sales at its remaining international businesses prompted a drop in Tesco’s shares when it released third-quarter results in January, despite a recovery in its domestic market share.

Dave Lewis, Tesco chief executive, said:

I’d like to thank Trevor for everything he has done for our business over the last four decades. He has worked tirelessly to strengthen and simplify our international business, and we couldn’t have made the progress we have without him.

Tony and Matt’s work has been at the heart of Tesco’s turnaround over the last two years and I’m delighted that they will join our executive committee. Their new roles will allow us to focus on the different opportunities presented in Asia and central Europe and I’m looking forward to working even more closely with them both.

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