Tesco CEO Dave Lewis to Step Down
LONDON, ENGLAND - U.K-based Tesco, one of the world’s largest grocery chains, has announced its CEO Dave Lewis will be stepping down in summer of 2020. The CEO has implemented changes that led to a radical overhaul of the British retailer since his appointment in 2014. Since then, Tesco has been on the rise to a great recovery, and he will be missed.
“It is with regret that I have accepted the resignation of Dave Lewis as Group CEO of Tesco, who has decided that he wants to leave the business in the summer of 2020,” stated John Allan, Chairman, in Tesco’s press release. “Dave has done an outstanding job in rebuilding Tesco since 2014, and he continues to have unwavering support from the Board.”
Lewis had set out on a mission to turn the company around back in 2014 after a massive £6.4 billion ($7.9 billion) loss was posted. The Wall Street Journal writes that Lewis is the first outsider of the company to take charge of Tesco, and take charge he did; Lewis bought U.K. food wholesaler Booker Group PLC, revamped Tesco’s online offerings, launched a discount chain to compete with German discounters Aldi and Lidl, and reported a better-than-expected first-half operating profit increase of 25.4 percent.
“My decision to step down as Group CEO is a personal one. I believe that the tenure of the CEO should be a finite one, and that now is the right time to pass the baton,” Lewis commented. “Our turnaround is complete, we have delivered all the metrics we set for ourselves. The leadership team is very strong, our strategy is clear, and it is delivering. The Tesco brand is stronger, and customer satisfaction is the highest it has been for many years.”
Tesco’s new CEO shall be Walgreens Boots Alliance executive Ken Murphy. Murphy, another outsider of the company, was joint Chief Operating Officer at Boots UK & Ireland before rising to Executive Vice President, Chief Commercial Officer, and President Global Brands at Walgreens Boots Alliance. He left his executive position at the U.S. retailer at the end of 2018, but retained a consultancy role, Tesco said. No start date has been given yet, but we can assume he and Lewis will work closely until Lewis’ departure next summer.
“Ken is unquestionably, a seasoned, growth-orientated business leader. He has deep commercial, marketing, and brand experience within retail and wholesale businesses, first with Alliance Unichem, and then with Boots,” commented Allan. “Ken has values that align with our own strong strategic, and operating acumen and is proven at the very top of a large and respected multinational retail group. I firmly believe we have the right person for the job.”
Celebrating its 100th anniversary, Tesco, which has a 27.4 percent share of Britain's grocery market, is in the final stages of a recovery plan that Lewis instigated in 2014. 2020 seems to be the year for change, and with the future of Tesco looking to be bright, ANUK will continue to report.