Tesco CEO to directly run UK business

Dave Lewis will assume direct responsibility of the UK unit

Tesco CEO Dave Lewis will take over running the grocer’s UK business on an interim basis from Robin Terrell, who had been in charge of the business since the company in September divulged the accounting irregularities. (Photograph: Aidan Crawley)

Tesco CEO Dave Lewis will take over running the grocer’s UK business on an interim basis from Robin Terrell, who had been in charge of the business since the company in September divulged the accounting irregularities. (Photograph: Aidan Crawley)

 

Tesco chief executive officer Dave Lewis will assume direct responsibility of the UK unit, the company’s biggest business, as the British retailer seeks to recover from the fallout of overstated earnings estimates.

Lewis will take over running the unit on an interim basis from Robin Terrell, who had been in charge of the business since the company in September divulged the accounting irregularities. The change takes effect next month, the Cheshunt, England-based retailer said yesterday.

The CEO, who joined Tesco on September 1st, is overhauling management, including putting Benny Higgins in charge of group strategy in addition to running Tesco’s banking division, as he strives to stabilise the business amid slumping sales and declining market share.

In October, Tesco chairman Richard Broadbent said he would step down following the accounting problems, which have led to a probe of the company by the UK’s Serious Fraud Office. The grocer generates about two-thirds of revenue from the UK.

Lewis joined the retailer in September from Unilever, the world’s second-largest consumer-products maker. Two management positions have been eliminated -- that of chief creative officer and group business planning and strategy director, Tesco said yesterday.

Terrell will assume Tesco’s head of customer position among other management changes.

Tesco shares fell 1.4 percent in London trading yesterday, giving the retailer a market value of £14.9 billion pounds ($23.5 billion) after this year’s 45 per cent decline.

Bloomberg