Britain’s John Lewis Partnership has appointed former Tesco executive Jason Tarry as its next chairman following Sharon White’s decision to step down from the retailer.
Tarry, who has 33 years of retail experience at Tesco including six as the supermarket’s UK & Ireland boss, will take up the role in September, John Lewis said on Monday.
He said it was a “great privilege” to succeed White as the seventh chairman of the employee-owned company that owns John Lewis department stores and Waitrose supermarkets.
White, the retailer’s first female chairman, said in October she would not seek a second term of office, making her tenure the shortest in its more than 100-year history.
The company’s stores, long favoured by Britain’s middle classes, were already facing competition from online rivals before the pandemic and the cost of living crisis heaped pressure on the group.
White, who had no retail experience before taking the role, closed stores and cut jobs, resulting in a return to profit in 2023 after three years of losses.
She said she was delighted to hand over to Tarry, who had “a combination of fantastic retail experience with leadership through transformation”.