F & P Wholesale has appointed Steve Tarrant as commercial director.

Mr Tarrant has more than 20 years’ retail industry experience, from grass roots to store management to buying and buying management. Starting his career at Wickes in 1985, Mr Tarrant quickly worked his way up to become the company’s youngest ever store manager before moving to open Wickes flagship 100th UK store in Hanworth.

In 2001, Mr Tarrant moved into a buying role for Wickes, with an initial focus on fencing and gardening before taking responsibility for timber, sheet materials, mouldings and decking. He then moved onto senior kitchen buyer and successfully introduced a range that was later awarded ‘Gold’ in the House Beautiful Awards. He later became the buying controller for showroom prior to becoming buying controller for trade, managing a turnover of £400m.

Speaking about his new role, Mr Tarrant said: “F & P Wholesale is a fantastic business that does a lot of things really well. This sentiment is echoed by our customers, which is the most powerful feedback I think you can get. As a business we are highly customer focused and this is the key driver in our strategy to take the company forward.

“We understand that we have to know our customer (and their customers too) inside out in order to deliver the right offer. Having visited a number of our longstanding merchant customers, I think it’s fair to say they are happy to share their views with us, which gives us some really valuable insight to work with. Through talking to customers I have been able to identify a number of opportunities where we can not only improve what we do today - enhancing existing product ranges, introducing new ranges - but also build the right commercial team to support our customers and challenge our suppliers.”