Asda yesterday (18 March) announced that CEO and president Roger Burnley has decided to leave the business next year, after the supermarket has transitioned fully to new ownership and once his long-term successor is in place.
A process will commence shortly to appoint a new CEO who is able to commit to leading the business over the long-term, the retailer said in a statement.
Burnley, 54, has been CEO since January 2018, having joined the business in 2016 as deputy CEO.
Commenting on his move, Burnley said: “My decision to leave Asda is personal and something I wanted to communicate to my colleagues as soon as I could. Whilst I remain fully committed to leading this great business for the next year and delivering our strategy, it is right to plan for a managed succession process well in advance.
“It has been a great privilege to play a leading role at Asda over the last five years – putting in place a clear strategy for long-term sustainable growth and doing the right things for our customers, colleagues and the communities we serve.
He continued: “I could not be prouder of our achievements during this time– which have seen us maintain our strong heritage as a value and values driven retailer, offering great products to our customers at consistently low prices as well as supporting our local communities. We have also developed our brand partnerships that mean we are an even more convenient place than ever to shop.
“We’ve grown a formidable online grocery operation that is on track to fulfil one million orders per week by the end of this year and continue to test our exciting new ‘Asda on the Move’ format, which is bringing the Asda brand to more communities in more convenient ways.
“We have supported our communities – both local and global – through our work to remove 9,300 tonnes of plastic from our operations and donate over 100 million meals through our partnership with FareShare and Trussell Trust. And through the Covid 19 pandemic it has given me immense pride to be able to support over 200,000 vulnerable people with weekly home shopping deliveries as well as provide 250,000 masks for care workers and 7000 laptops for local schools. Most importantly, I have seen the pride on my colleagues faces at the recognition that the work they do really matters to society.'
Asda was owned until earlier this year by US retail giant Walmart Inc. It is now majority owned by Mohsin and Zuber Issa, founders and co-CEOs of the global convenience and forecourts retailer EG Group, and TDR Capital, a leading private equity investor. Walmart retains a minority shareholding.
Following the announcement, Mohsin and Zuber Issa and TDR Capital jointly said: “Roger and his team have protected and enhanced an exceptionally resilient business which we are proud to own.
“Roger will continue to lead Asda over the next year and deliver the strategy that he and his leadership team have set in motion, whilst at the same time working with us on identifying his successor.
“We are acutely aware of the responsibility we have in ensuring this great British brand continues to thrive for years to come - delivering great value products for customers, serving communities, and developing our colleagues.”