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Senior Category Manager

PT Executive
Yorkshire HQ- Hybrid Working
£Attractive Salary + Benefits
Closing date
29 Feb 2024

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Business Sector
Food & Drink
Contract Type
Full Time
Buying, Category Management, Marketing, Merchandising

Job Details

Who we are:

Calbee Group UK are part of Japanese-owned Calbee Inc, a $2.5 billion manufacturer of crisps, snacks and cereals and the fourth largest savoury snacks manufacturer in the world. Here in the UK, the business is best known for its largest brand – Seabrook – a brand with 80 years of heritage in crisps. Seabrook Crisps was established in 1945 in Bradford, when Fish & Chip Shop owner Charles Brook began frying crisps for his customers to enjoy whilst queuing for their Friday night fish & chips. After a photo development order was mislabelled as Seabrook instead of C. Brook, the name took hold and Seabrook Crisps was born.

The Seabrook brand is a much-loved British snack classic, renowned for its great tasting, iconic crinkle cut crisps, range of distinctive flavours and everyday value. That combination resonates strongly with shoppers, so the formerly northern brand is now nationwide. Since it was acquired by Calbee in 2018, the brand has expanded to product potato and corn snacks as well as crisps, setting Seabrook on a journey to become a cross-category masterbrand with significant scale.

Calbee is ambitious to grow extensively overseas and the UK has a critical role to play in that growth. Over the past 3 years, the business has step changed its investment in above the line marketing year after year, whilst continuing to invest in expanding its manufacturing capacity and product capabilities. With Seabrook growing rapidly, the addition of Calbee healthier snack brand Harvest Snaps to the UK portfolio in 2021, and expansion in own label, the business is an exciting challenger to the huge global competitors in the crisps & snacks category, with an ambitious growth agenda. That makes it a great time to join us on our growth journey.

The UK business has its head office at the Seabrook Crisps site in Bradford and a second site, producing snacks, at Deeside, North Wales.


The Role:

Working closely with the Marketing Director and wider commercial team, the Senior Category & Insights Manager will play a critical role in contributing to UK business strategy and enabling the ambitious growth agenda.

The role offers the best of both worlds, being both “strategic and “hands on”:

  • Develop and lead the category vision for the business and brands, securing key stakeholder buy-in
  • Work closely with senior management on a day-to-day basis, inputting to top level strategic discussions
  • Lead the category function, working closely with the commercial team to help maximise sustainable growth opportunities and ensure ambitious but achievable sales, volume and profit objectives are delivered
  • Collaborate closely with the wider marketing and R&D function to ensure brand plans and the NPD agenda are grounded in compelling insight
  • Demonstrate an entrepreneurial approach, relishing the opportunity to “get stuck in”

Key responsibilities will include:

  • Manage data provider relationships and produce category insight reports
  • Proactively interrogate category data and other sources of category, competitor and consumer insight with curiosity, providing compelling insights to support marketing, commercial and leadership teams
  • Work closely with the rest of the marketing team to deliver insight-led brand and NPD plans
  • Work closely with the commercial team to produce compelling customer presentations, tailored to support business and customer objectives
  • Develop relationships with relevant strategic customer partners, elevating our position as category advisors in both brand and own label
  • Seek out new sources of insight, maintaining an outward-looking approach and remaining abreast of market, category, customer and consumer dynamics
  • Manage the delivery of primary consumer research and provide insightful reports on outcomes, to inform brand and strategic planning

Knowledge & experience:

  • Several years’ experience in FMCG category & insights management (at either Category Manager or Senior Category level)
  • Able to demonstrate commercially astute strategic thinking, aligning recommendations to consumer, category & business needs and telling compelling category stories
  • Experience of the macro snacking category would be beneficial, but not essential

Personal attributes:

  • Curious – not taking information at face value, always seeking to understand motivations and turn information into insight
  • Collaborative – working together, negotiating and influencing stakeholders across functions & at all levels
  • Resilient & positive – calm under pressure, enthusiastic, comfortable managing ambiguity when necessary
  • Agile & action-orientated – self-motivated; able to assimilate information, think and act quickly and influence others to do so
  • Pragmatic & creative problem solver


The ideal candidate will:

  • Currently be working in a branded FMCG business working within Category / Insights
  • Be able to demonstrate a successful history in influencing customers and stakeholders
  • Be well accustomed to navigating organisations, with the energy and enthusiasm to make things happen
  • Be willing and able to take on responsibility for direction as well as execution and delivery


In return:

You’ll enjoy the best of both worlds, working for an entrepreneurial, UK challenger brand business, with the backing and security of a global parent company. People joining us comment on the buzz around the place, the energy of a business with big growth ambition, and our friendly, supportive team ethos. We we will do all we can to help you to enjoy your role and reach your potential. We value our people, and the personal skills, experience, and qualities they bring. We win and grow together, as one team.


PT Executive specialise in the recruitment of Sales & Marketing Professionals within the FMCG and Consumer Durable Sectors across the UK. Within this Niche area we have particular skill in the appointment of: 

  • Board & Controller Level
  • National Accounts
  • Category Management
  • Interim
Company info

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