Jun 8, 2022
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Outgoing M&S boss and HQ staff get bonus for first time since 2017

Jun 8, 2022

Departed M&S chief executive Steve Rowe is being handsomely rewarded for spearheading the UK retail giant’s turnaround.

Photo: Sandra Halliday

The former boss, who stepped down last month, more than doubled his pay to £2.63 million last year after getting his first bonus since 2017. His £1.6 million annual bonus is on top of his £1 million salary.

The group also said 4,500 store management and head office staff would also get a bonus for the first time since 2017, which was the end of Rowe’s first year in the job.

However, Rowe will not receive a payoff but will continue to be employed as a consultant, paid up to £843,000. This can be for up to a year after ceasing full-time employment for M&S – after the group’s annual shareholder meeting on 5 July.

He will also be able to cash in 2.85 million of M&S bonus shares (currently worth about £4.1 million) over the next few years, if performance criteria are met.

Andrew Fisher, head of M&S’s remuneration committee, said in the retailers’s annual report: “[Rowe] has worked tirelessly and determinedly to deliver on the transformation promise, as demonstrated in our strong 2021-22 business performance.”

Rowe’s focus on ‘Mrs M&S’ has saw pre-tax profit last year hit £391.7 million in the year to 2 April compared with a loss of £209m, reflecting the growth M&S is currently enjoying. Sales also rose 18.6% to £10.9 billion.

“Not only have we emerged from the pandemic a stronger business, but we are also at the end of the ‘fixing the basics’ phase of our transformation. And we have a very dynamic new leadership team taking over from Steve Rowe, our longstanding chief executive,” Norman said at the time.

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