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Marks and Spencer Group CEO Marc Bollandt to retire in 2016; Steve Rowe to succeed

LONDON, 2016-1-11 — /EPR Retail News/ — Marks and Spencer Group plc today announces that Marc Bolland has informed the Board that, after six years in the role, he wishes to retire as CEO in 2016.

Marc will be succeeded as CEO by Steve Rowe, Executive Director of General Merchandise. Marc Bolland will remain CEO and on the Board until the end of the current financial year on 2 April 2016 when he will hand over to Steve Rowe. Marc will then remain available to Steve and the Board to assist in the transition until 30 June 2016.

In reaching its conclusion to appoint Steve Rowe as the next CEO of Marks and Spencer Group plc, the Nominations Committee set a rigorous assessment, development and selection process, including external benchmarking. The Board is grateful to Marc for his planning, enabling the Nominations Committee to work carefully and systematically on his succession.

Steve Rowe has been with Marks and Spencer Group plc for over 25 years and been a Board Member since 2012. Before joining the Board, Steve worked in a range of senior positions across the business including Director of Retail and E-commerce and various positions in General Merchandise. In 2012 he was appointed by Marc Bolland to the Executive team as Executive Director, Food and was appointed to the Board of Marks and Spencer Group plc. In particularly difficult market conditions Steve led the Food business to produce 12 consecutive quarters of like for like growth, grow its margin and all its key performance metrics, continue its record of outstanding innovation and set out a path for further profitable growth. In July 2015, Steve Rowe was appointed Executive Director, General Merchandise with a mandate to improve the overall performance of that business, building on the improved design and sourcing capabilities.

Robert Swannell, Marks and Spencer Group plc Chairman, said “Over the last six years Marc Bolland has led Marks & Spencer through a period of necessary change. Over this time, the company has made significant investment in enhanced infrastructure and capabilities.

“It is now positioned for a digital age, with its own on-line platform and dedicated e-commerce distribution centre, improved design and sourcing capabilities in General Merchandise and an industry-leading track record of growth and innovation in the Food business.  Marc has put Plan A at the heart of the business and leaves a strong sustainability legacy. The Board is very grateful to Marc for his leadership in this important period of enhancing Marks & Spencer’s competitive position for its future.

“I am delighted that, after the most rigorous succession planning, Marc will be succeeded by Steve Rowe. Steve has a deep knowledge of Marks & Spencer and a proven track record of delivering results in key parts of the business. The Nomination Committee was unanimous in supporting Steve’s appointment in the light of his considerable knowledge of the business and its people, his appetite to continue the process of change, particularly in General Merchandise, his perceptive and effective problem solving, his values and his observed leadership.“

Marc Bolland said “It has been a huge honour to lead one of Britain’s most iconic companies. I am delighted to handover to Steve Rowe as my successor. I have worked closely with Steve for six years and I am convinced that he will be a great leader for Marks & Spencer. I would like to thank all my colleagues and the Board at Marks & Spencer for being so supportive of the drive to prepare M&S for the future. I am proud to leave such a large group of talent behind in the business.”

Steve Rowe said, “It is a great privilege to be appointed CEO of Marks & Spencer and to have the opportunity to lead this unique company and all its people forward.”

Notes to Editors:

Media Conference Call:
This will be hosted by Marc Bolland, Chief Executive Officer at 07.10 on 7th January 2016:
Dial in number: +44 (0) 203 427 1909 Confirmation code: 4047703

A recording of this call will be available until 17th January 2016:
Dial in number: +44 (0)20 3427 0598 Pass code: 4047703


Steve Rowe:

From 2 April 2016, Steve Rowe will receive a salary of £810,000 on his appointment as Chief Executive Officer. The overall variable incentive opportunity for the Chief Executive role will remain unchanged. All other terms of Steve Rowe’s existing service agreement, including pension allowance, will remain unchanged.

Marc Bolland:

  • The following information is provided in accordance with section 430(2B) of the Companies Act 2006:
  • Marc Bolland’s remuneration terms will be in line with his service agreement and the key provisions for contract termination as per Marks and Spencer Group plc’s Executive Remuneration Policy approved by shareholders in 2014.
  • In line with Marc Bolland’s service agreement, Marc Bolland will receive salary, benefits and pension benefits by way of phased monthly payments (subject to mitigation) up to the end of the notice period of 7 January 2017.
  • Marc Bolland will remain eligible for consideration for payment of an annual bonus for 2015/16, subject to performance.
  • Marc Bolland will not be eligible to participate in the Annual Bonus or Performance Share Plan awards for 2016/17.
  • Any unvested nil-cost options awarded to Marc Bolland under the Deferred Share Bonus Plan will vest in full on termination and may then be exercised in accordance with the Plan rules.
  • Any unvested nil-cost options awarded under the Performance Share Plan will be time pro-rated and will vest, subject to performance conditions on a wait and see basis at the normal vesting date and may then be exercised in accordance with the Plan rules.

Further details of the operation of the Deferred Share Award and Performance Share Plan are set out in the Directors’ Remuneration Report in our Annual Report and Financial Statements 2015. Full disclosure of these remuneration arrangements will be provided in our Directors’ Remuneration Report in 2016.

For further information, please contact:

Investor Relations:
Majda Rainer:+44 (0)20 8718 1563
Helen Cox: +44 (0)20 8718 8491

Media enquiries:
Corporate Press Office:+44 (0)20 8718 1919

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