Tesco Chief Philip Clarke To Step Down
Tesco's chief executive Philip Clarke is to quit after a string of poor results for the supermarket giant.
The group, which is seeing its worst sales performance in four decades, announced Mr Clarke's departure as it issued a fresh warning on profits.
He will stand down on October 1 and†will be replaced by Dave Lewis from Unilever, who is a non-executive director of BSkyB, owner of Sky News.
Tesco's sales fell by 3.7% in the three months to May 24 on a like-for-like basis, an acceleration of the 3% slide in the previous quarter.
Mr Lewis will receive a basic salary of £1.25m, plus "standard" benefits. He will also receive £525,000 in lieu of his current year cash bonus from Unilever
Mr Clarke, who earned £1.14m in the role, will get a payoff worth 12 months salary.
When Mr Clarke took over from Sir Terry Leahy in March 2011, the Tesco share price stood at 400p, but are now trading at 291p - equating to a shareholder loss of £8.8bn.
Tesco chairman Sir Richard Broadbent said: "Having guided Tesco through a substantial re-positioning in challenging markets, Philip Clarke agreed with the Board that this is the appropriate moment to hand over to a new leader with fresh perspectives and a new profile."
He added: "Dave Lewis brings a wealth of international consumer experience and expertise in change management, business strategy, brand management and customer development."
Mr Clarke said: "Having taken the business through the huge challenges of the last few years, I think this is the right moment to hand over responsibility and I am delighted that Dave Lewis has agreed to join us.
"Dave has worked with Tesco directly or indirectly over many years and is well-known within the business. I will do everything in my power to support him in taking the company forward through the next stage of its journey."
But Sky's City Editor Mark Kleinman said the appointment of Mr Clarke's successor represents a gamble.
He said: "Dave Lewis, a 25-year veteran of Unilever, the consumer goods giant behind Dove, Lynx and Marmite, is the first outsider to take the helm of Tesco in its 95-year history."
Mr Clarke, who had worked his way up from the shop floor to head Tesco, admitted last month the chain's sales figures were the worst he had known in 40 years.
But a trading update said conditions were more "challenging" than predicted.
The group said: "The overall market is weaker and, combined with increasing investments we are making to improve the customer offer and to build long-term loyalty, this means that sales and trading profit in the first half of the year are somewhat below expectations."