Financial News

  • 30 January 2014, 15:49

Sainsbury's Shares Drop As Justin King Quits

Supermarket chain Sainsbury's has seen its share price drop after it announced the impending departure of long-time boss Justin King.

He has been in the role for a decade and will depart in July.

Shares dropped more than 5% but eased to around 2% after the news was announced.

Here is the latest share price.

The new chief executive will be Mike Coupe, 53, who is currently the company's group commercial director.

Mr Coupe is an former director of Big Food Group and Iceland, and has been at Sainsbury's since 2004.

Mr King said: "This was not an easy decision for me to make and in truth it will never feel like the right time to leave a company like Sainsbury's.

"It has been a privilege to have led the company for the past 10 years and I am incredibly proud of our achievements in that time."

The outgoing boss, who was hailed for turning around the fortunes of the company, has not revealed what his next appointment will be.

He has almost trebled underlying annual profit during his tenure to 756m and sales have increased 59%.

Around 10 million more people shop at Sainsbury's each week compared to when Mr King took the helm in 2004.

Around 600m in operational cost savings have been achieved since 2008-9, with the underlying operating margin up to 3.56% last year, compared to 2.15% in 2004-5.

Mr King will depart after the annual shareholders' meeting on July 9.

Sainsbury's is currently the equal second biggest supermarket in Britain behind Tesco along with Asda, with 17.1% of the market share.

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