• Sunday, July 03, 2022

Business

Asda ‘suspends hunt for new CEO’

Zuber and Mohsin Issa, the founders of EG Group.

By: Chandrashekar Bhat

ASDA appears to be in no hurry to find a new chief executive officer as the recent hires at senior levels have brought in plenty of expertise to run the company for now.

Media reports have suggested that the UK’s third-largest retail outlet chain has halted its search for a replacement for Roger Burnley who quit the company in March 2021.

Burnley, who rose in the ranks at Asda, was elevated as the CEO in 2018 and he continued in the job for about three years.

The period saw the billionaire Issa brothers and the private equity investor TDR Capital jointly taking over the Leeds-based company from American giant Walmart for an enterprise value of £6.8 billion.

Lord Rose of Monewden was named as chairman of Asda in November. It recently hired Ken Towle from Nisa to run its store operations and Kris Comerford from Tesco to look after its food business.

Mohsin, one of the Issa brothers, is also believed to be spending most of his time at the company’s headquarters.

A new CEO, if hired, will have to play second fiddle to the Issa brothers making the job less attractive for top professionals.

Jason Tarry, who is leading Tesco’s UK and Ireland business and Stuart Machin of Marks & Spencer have rejected offers to work at Asda, The Times reported.

Morrisons’ chief operating officer Trevor Strain also reportedly turned down similar offers from the Issa brothers-owned company.

“Anyone who took the job would have to accept that the combination of the Issas and Rose would mean they wouldn’t be calling the shots and that doesn’t really suit many food chiefs’ personalities,” a headhunter told The Times.

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