Tesco CEO Sir Terry Leahy has decided to retire in March 2011 after 14 years as CEO. The Tesco Board has moved to implement its long-term succession plan, with Philip Clarke succeeding Sir Leahy and a number of other Board changes.
Clarke (50) has worked at Tesco throughout his career, spending many years in retail and commercial. He joined the Tesco Board in 1998 and currently has responsibility for the group’s growing international operations in Asia and Europe as well as group IT.
David Reid, chairman, said, “Leahy has made an unrivalled contribution over a prolonged period. He is undoubtedly one of the leading businessmen of his generation. He has put in place a strategy that can secure the progress of Tesco for years to come.”
“When I became CEO, I had a plan to build Tesco round its customers, to make it number one in the UK and to find new long-term growth in non-food, in services and in international expansion,” Leahy said, “I wanted to develop a purpose and values that could sustain Tesco through its challenges and encourage and grow future leaders. It has taken 14 years but that strategy has become a firm reality now and so I feel my work is almost complete.”
Admiring Tesco, Leahy said there was no better job than leading the company. “After retirement I will concentrate mainly on private investment, but I will keep a large shareholding in Tesco and remain its biggest supporter.”
There will be other changes as well at the Tesco Board from March 2011.
Tim Mason, president and CEO of Fresh & Easy business in the US, will become Deputy CEO of Tesco Plc. He will continue to be based in the US.
David Potts will become the first CEO of the Asia business. He is currently retail and logistics director in the UK and has responsibility for the Republic of Ireland.
Richard Brasher, currently commercial director, will assume the newly-created role of CEO of the UK business and take responsibility for the Republic of Ireland. Andrew Higginson will continue as CEO of Retail Services (comprising Tesco Bank, Tesco Telecoms, Tesco’s internet business and Dunnhumby). Laurie McIlwee, will continue as Finance Director, and Lucy Neville-Rolfe will continue as corporate and legal affairs director.
— IndiaRetailing Bureau