Tesco poaches finance boss from Marks & Spencer

By Laurence Gibbons

- Last updated on GMT

Stewart will leave Marks & Spencer to join Tesco
Stewart will leave Marks & Spencer to join Tesco

Related tags Corporate governance Chief financial officer

Tesco has appointed Marks & Spencer (M&S) chief financial officer (cfo) Alan Stewart to the same position, filling the role left void by Laurie McIlwee in April 2014.

Stewart will receive a basic annual salary of £750,000, shares worth £1.74M and standard benefits commensurate with his position.

Two further awards – his 2014 annual bonus and 2011 performance sharing programme – will be taken into account. Full details of his total remuneration would be disclosed in its 2015 annual report, Tesco claimed.

 ‘Right blend’

 Tesco ceo Philip Clarke said Stewart provided the retailer with all the characteristics it was looking for in a replacement for McIlwee.

 “When we set out on this search we wanted a candidate who had the right blend of experience, leadership and values to play a leading role in the transformation of Tesco,” ​he added. “We have found all three in Stewart. I am looking forward to working alongside him and I know Tesco will benefit from the breadth and depth of his experience.”

Tesco would benefit from Stewart’s “substantial retail experience and financial expertise,”​ the retailer’s chairman Sir Richard Broadbent added.

Stewart started his career in investment banking with HSBC, before becoming cfo at travel agent Thomas Cook in 1998 and later being appointed as UK ceo in 2001.

From there he moved to WH Smith as group cfo, where he worked alongside Kate Swann to improve the company’s performance.

In 2008 he was appointed cfo at aircraft leasing business AWAS, before moving to M&S in 2010.

He is also due to join the board of drinks giant Diageo as a non-executive director in September 2014.


McIlwee stood down after five years as cfo on April 4 2014, having joined the business as UK finance director in 2000.

Britain’s biggest retailer’s third quarter results were described as “disappointing”​ and “poor”​ by city analyst Shore Capital, in December 2013.

Tesco was criticised for its like-for-like sales being down 1.5% 18 months after it had launched a £1bn turnaround plan.

Clarke blamed the results on continuing pressures on UK household finances during the summer.

Related topics People & Skills

Related news

Show more

Follow us

Featured Jobs

View more