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Friday 28 August 2015: Woolworths Limited (Woolworths) today announced the appointment of Gordon Cairns as a Non-Executive Director and his election as Chairman.

Mr Cairns’ appointment will be effective from Tuesday, 1 September 2015.  Mr Waters will retire from the Woolworths Board as Chairman and Non-Executive Director on the same day.

Mr Cairns has extensive retail and FMCG experience as the former Chief Executive Officer of Lion Nathan Ltd as well as having held senior marketing, operations and finance roles at PepsiCo, Cadbury Ltd and Nestlé.

He is also currently Chairman of Origin Energy Ltd and Quick Service Restaurant Group Ltd. He is a director of Macquarie Group Ltd, Macquarie Bank Ltd and Non-Executive Director of World Education Australia.

Mr Cairns was previously Chairman of David Jones Ltd and Rebel Group Ltd.  He was also a Director of The Centre for Independent Studies and a Director of Westpac Banking Corporation Ltd.

Mr Cairns said: “Woolworths is a great Australian business and it is an honour to be appointed to serve as its Chairman. It is a company that has daily relevance to most Australian and New Zealand families, whether they are shareholders, customers or employees.  

“The most immediate issue is to identify new leadership to take the business forward. The CEO search process has been underway since June and is progressing well.

“Ralph Waters’ decision to retire has facilitated Board renewal and allows me to participate in the CEO search process.  I acknowledge and thank him for his strong contribution over the past four and a half years.”

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