Coats plc, the industrial thread and consumer textile crafts business, has appointed John Lovell in the newly created role of group pensions director. John will be responsible for overseeing the Coats’ pension schemes worldwide and Guiness Peat Group plc’s* UK pension schemes.


He joins from J Sainsbury plc where he was Head of Pensions.The role includes developing the pension strategy for Coats and GPG and working closely with the trustees of the various schemes to ensure its delivery

Richard Howes, Chief Financial Officer, Coats plc, said: “I am very pleased John has joined Coats. He has extensive experience of overseeing large pension schemes in the UK and internationally as well as the complex and changing regulation of the pensions sector. He will play an important role in the development and delivery of the pension strategy across the Group.”

The principal Coats pension plan is in the UK and GPG also has two UK pension plans. There are also a number of other Coats plans in countries across the world with the US plan, which is in surplus, being the largest

John’s previous roles include director of UK pensions at Lafarge UK, the building materials company, and UK pensions manager at National Grid. He has also worked at Grant Thornton, was Pension Development Manager at Italian insurance company, Generali, and started his career at Friends Provident Life Office (now Friends Life). He has a law degree and is a Fellow of the Pensions Management Institute and an Associate of the Chartered Insurers Institute.