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Ex-Asda chief Archie Norman to be new M&S chairman

Ex-Asda chief Archie Norman to be new M&S chairman

Marks & Spencer (MAKSY) stock gained on Friday morning after it appointed a new chairman, the second key hire in a turnaround plan this week, sending shares to their highest point in nearly a year.

Norman, who stepped down as chairman of broadcaster ITV PLC (LON:ITV) in January 2016 and has also been a Conservative MP and shadow minister, will succeed Robert Swannell, whose retirement was announced in December.

Mr Norman stepped down as ITV chairman previous year and has led a number of major businesses including Kingfisher and Energis.

"The plans will improve the M&S store estate to better meet customer needs and include opening 200 new Food-only stores and selling Clothing and Home from 60 fewer locations", the company said.

"Archie brings a breadth of experience with an extensive track record in retail and brands", M&S said.




He stepped down as chairman of ITV past year.

The announcement comes at a critical time for the high street stalwart as it closes stores, boosts its food business and seeks to revive its clothing division, which once drove profits at the retailer.

He worked for management consultants McKinsey before joining Kingfisher.

Clive Black, retail analyst at Shore Capital, said: "Mr Norman is a formidable appointment who, alongside Steve Rowe, who is CEO of M&S, means that there are two very strong characters at the helm of a once great British label that is trying to refind its goal and relevance to the British shopper to profitable effect".

"Having conducted a very rigorous appointment process, it was clear to us that Archie was the best person to be chairman", said Vindi Banga, M&S' senior independent director. McDonald will join in the autumn.

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