Jim Armitage: Top job or the boot for high-flier handed Home Retail challengeComments Off on Jim Armitage: Top job or the boot for high-flier handed Home Retail challenge
It’s a mystery why Sainsbury’s executive John Rogers didn’t chuck his hat in the ring to replace chief executive Justin King.
Not that Mike Coupe was a bad option but Rogers, the finance boss and former property director who knew the Sainsbury’s estate better than anyone, seemed eminently capable.
He stuck with the finance director’s ticket in the end, and has impressed analysts and investors with his grip on the numbers, not to mention charm.
That a big-hitter like him has been put in charge of integrating Argos can only be welcomed by doubters of the merger like me.
If anyone’s going to get this left-field project to work, it’s Rogers. Plus, Coupe’s move of his main lieutenant into that role suggests that the chief executive is acutely aware of the huge strain his risky plan is going to inflict on the business. Good.
But it also inherently means that oversight of Sainsbury’s under-pressure core business of groceries is now down by one top man.
I guess it could be worse; Sainsbury’s has the depth in management to slide another long-server into Rogers’ seat as interim finance director, Ed Barker.
For Rogers, the move is a career gamble. If he pulls off the integration, he’ll get the CEO’s job next time. But if it proves impossible, he’ll get the boot.
Muslim role model
Unless you run a bank or a fund manager, you won’t have heard of Malik Karim, profiled today on page 52. More’s the pity.
The founder of Fenchurch Advisory Partners is one of the financial services sector’s leading M&A advisers and arguably one of the City’s top entrepreneurs.
He’s also a quietly devout Muslim.
As such, while he’ll hate me for saying it, this intelligent executive from very humble roots should, like our Mayor, be celebrated by the government as an example of the contribution so many Muslims make to our city.
So speak up, Karim — London needs more role models like you.