Lord John Sainsbury of Preston Candover, has died at the age of 94
Lord John Sainsbury of Preston Candover, the life president and former chairman of Sainsbury’s, has died aged 94.
During his 40-year career with the supermarket retailer, Lord Sainsbury led the business through significant change.
He started working in his family’s business in 1950, and became a director in 1958, followed by deputy chairman in 1967, taking over the role from his father.
Lord Sainsbury, whose mantra was “retail is in the detail” retired from his role as chief executive and chairman in 1992.
He sat in the House of Lords as a member of the Conservative Party.
Sainsbury’s current CEO Simon Roberts described him as “one of the great retailers of his time”.
He added he was “a shopkeeper to his core” and “was ambitious for the company and led Sainsbury’s through an unprecedented period of growth; he was a truly inspirational man”.
Martin Scicluna, current chairman of Sainsbury’s, added: “Under his stewardship we modernised our stores, developed our food ranges and floated Sainsbury’s on the London Stock Exchange in what was, at the time, the UK’s largest-ever initial public offering.
“He was knighted by Her Majesty the Queen in 1980 for services to the food retailing industry, made a life peer in 1989 and in 1992 was appointed as one of only 24 Knights of the Garter.
“In recent years, he hosted a visit by Her Majesty the Queen to celebrate the 150th anniversary of our business. He will be greatly missed by the board and all his friends and colleagues at Sainsbury’s.
Simon Roberts, Chief Executive Officer of Sainsbury’s, said: “All of us at Sainsbury’s are deeply saddened by the news that Lord Sainsbury has passed away. On behalf of Sainsbury’s colleagues past and present, I extend our heartfelt condolences to Lady Sainsbury and the rest of Lord John’s family.”
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