LONDON — Marc Bolland, a Dutch-born supermarket executive, will succeed Sir Stuart Rose as chief executive of Marks and Spencer Group plc next year, although his start date has not been confirmed.
This story first appeared in the November 19, 2009 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
“We were looking for someone to take the business on for another decade of its journey,” said Rose during a conference call Wednesday. “Marc has got great international experience, and we are a business that wants to go international. He has turnaround expertise and he has proved that he can energize a team.”
Bolland, 50, is ceo at the midmarket British supermarket chain Morrisons, the U.K.’s fourth-largest supermarket chain. Prior to joining Morrisons in 2006, Bolland served as chief operating officer and executive board member at Heineken NV, a company he originally joined in 1987.
“M&S is one of the world’s great brands,” Bolland said.
M&S’ share price closed up 5.9 percent at 3.90 pound, or $6.53, on Wednesday evening.
During the call, Rose said he was not able to confirm when Bolland would join the company. Bolland will remain at Morrisons until Jan. 31. He is credited with reviving the supermarket chain, which saw profits soar 78 percent to 655 million pounds, or $1.09 billion, in the year ending Feb. 1.
Rose holds the roles of ceo and chairman at M&S — a position that’s drawn criticism from some shareholders — and will continue as chairman of M&S on a part-time basis.
He will leave the retailer by July 2011, and the board plans to name an independent chairman to succeed him.
An M&S spokeswoman said the company is looking to grow in the 41 territories where it already has a presence, including India, China, Greece, and the Czech Republic.