John Lewis hires former Tesco boss as chair

8th April 2024 | Jack Oliver

John Lewis has appointed former Tesco chief executive officer Jason Tarry as chair elect, following Dame Sharon White’s decision to step down at the end of her term.

Tarry had worked at Tesco for over 33 years and held the role of CEO for six of those. His experience spans grocery, general merchandise, and fashion in senior commercial, operational and general management positions.

As well as leading the supermarket retailer, Tarry also led the expansion of F&F Clothing across Europe as Group CEO.

He is expected to take up the role in September, as White steps down to support the transition.

Rita Clifton, deputy chair and chair of the Nomination Committee, said: “As the partnership moves into the next phase of its modernisation focused on our core retail business as well future growth, we are confident that Jason will provide the kind of inspirational leadership, a proven track record in multi-channel, multi-category retail success and a strong identification with partnership values that we are seeking in this role. Jason has impressed everyone throughout the interview process with his warmth, his belief in the partnership’s ideals and democratic principles and his appreciation for our unique and special brands.” 

Dame Sharon White added: “I’m delighted to be handing over to Jason, who has a combination of fantastic retail experience with leadership through transformation. From my many conversations with Jason, he has demonstrated a clear appreciation for the partnership model and champions it. I look forward to welcoming him to the Partnership in September and carrying out a smooth handover. 

Jason Tarry said: “The partnership and its brands stand for trust, value, quality and service and it’s a great privilege to be succeeding Sharon as the seventh chairman. The Partnership is unique and I’ve long been an admirer of the employee-ownership model, its values and partner-led customer service. This starts with a sharp focus on being brilliant retailers for customers and investing in growth. I’m looking forward to working with the board, Nish and the Executive Team to deliver its clear strategy.” 

Last month, the retail group recorded a return to profitability in the 2023/24 financial year, recording a profit before tax and exceptional items of £42m.


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