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Costa Appoints Group HR Director to its Leadership Team

Press Release   •   Oct 12, 2016 19:26 BST

Kate Seljeflot appointed as Costa Coffee Group HR Director

Seljeflot joins Costa after 14 years at Diageo PLC, where she was most recently Global Talent Director, responsible for senior appointments and succession planning, as well as overseeing Diageo’s diversity and inclusion strategy. In addition, Seljeflot oversaw key brand initiatives including Diageo’s global graduate programme. 

In her new role, Seljeflot will harness her years of experience of working with global markets and her proven track record for effectively driving significant change, to lead the Global HR team and Costa’s international expansion.

She will be responsible for all employee related issues including executive talent appointments, organisation effectiveness, resource planning, recruitment and training. She started at Costa in September and will be reporting into new Managing Director, Dominic Paul.

Dominic Paul, Managing Director of Costa, said, "We are delighted to announce Kate as our Global HR Director. She will be a driving force in the continued expansion of our workforce at a highly exciting time. Costa is an incredibly people-centric business and we want to retain our heritage while continuing to grow."

Commenting on her new role, Kate said, “I am thrilled to have taken on my new role with Costa. There is no doubt that this is a business that truly values its people across the globe. I am looking forward to nurturing and building our talent and growing the Costa brand through our world-class people.”

The appointment follows Priya Farish’s promotion to Costa’s Global Talent Director. Priya will now report into Kate.

Costa is the UK’s largest coffee shop chain with over 2,000 coffee shops in the UK and over 30,000 employees worldwide. 

Founded in London by Italian brothers Sergio and Bruno Costa in 1971, our quality coffee was the premium choice for boutique hotels and restaurants across the city. Today we continue to roast the original Mocha Italia recipe in Old Paradise Street, London with our 100% Rainforest Alliance certified coffee remaining at the core of our quality coffee credentials.

With over 2,000 coffee shops in the UK and more than 1,240 in 31 overseas markets, we are the fastest growing coffee shop business in the UK. We’re proud to be the UK’s favourite coffee shop, having been awarded “Best Branded Coffee Shop Chain in the UK and Ireland" by Allegra Strategies for six years running (2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014 & December 2015).

Our people are the heart of our business and we employ over 30,000 people worldwide, with a target of 5,000 new jobs in the UK by 2020. Last year, we increased Barista pay by c.10%. Our Pay for progression model was introduced in October 2015, and our training rate of £7.20 was launched well ahead of National Living Wage.

As a popular, mainstream food and beverage brand, we can make a positive contribution towards customer health and wellbeing by investing in safe sourcing, new product development and consumer education. Health and wellbeing remains a strategic business focus area and we will continue to evolve our product offer over the coming years. We are working to reduce added sugar in our drinks by 25% by 2020 and will reduce salt in our sandwich range by a further 5% by 2017.

We care about the communities we operate in with our store teams volunteering over 10,000 hours of their time to lend support to over 900 local community projects.

Looking after coffee growers is extremely important to us, which is why we established The Costa Foundation, a registered charity with the aim to relieve poverty, advance education and the health and environment of coffee-growing communities around the world. So far, The Costa Foundation has funded the building of 53 schools and improved the social and economic welfare of coffee-growing communities.