Tesco to name Kingfisher chief Garnier as director

Tesco will this week move to strengthen the level of retail expertise in its boardroom by naming Thierry Garnier, the chief executive of B&Q’s parent company, as a non-executive director.

Sky News has learnt that Britain’s biggest grocer will announce Kingfisher chief executive Mr Garnier’s appointment alongside its full-year results on Wednesday.

The recruitment of Mr Garnier, a former boss of the French supermarket giant Carrefour’s international operations, will bolster the retail credentials of Tesco’s non-executive directors, few of whom have held senior managerial roles in the industry.

Tesco’s annual results will highlight the impact of the pandemic on its business three months after it warned that the COVID-19 crisis had incurred a bill of more than £800m.

The retailer has, nevertheless, been one of the big business winners over the last year as locked-down Britons shopped online and in-store in record numbers.

In December, Tesco became the first of the major food retailers to repay business rates relief to the government – a move which cost it £585m and sparked a wave of copycat moves by rivals.

Last week, the Co-op Group sparked outrage by confirming that it would not return £65m to the public purse despite seeking to position itself as an ethical organisation.

Analysts and shareholders will be closely watching on Wednesday for evidence of new chief executive Ken Murphy’s strategic plans for the company.

Mr Murphy replaced Dave Lewis as Tesco’s chief executive just over six months ago, but is not expected to outline a detailed vision until later this year.

Tesco and Kingfisher both declined to comment on Tuesday evening.


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