Former Sainsbury’s CEO Justin King joins M&S

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M&S Lawrence Christensen

Marks & Spencer has announced the appointment of former Sainsbury’s chief executive Justin King as a non-executive director.

King, who is credited with driving the revival of Sainsbury’s during his 10 years at the helm prior to the appointment of current chief executive Mike Coupe in 2014, will join M&S in January.

This will mark his return to the retailer after a three-year stint as manager of its food division in 2001, where he is credited with pioneering its Simply Food range.

M&S will be hoping he can replicate the turnaround he drove at Sainsbury’s and before that at Asda, where he worked alongside M&S chairman Archie Norman.

This marks the latest and reportedly last senior appointment at M&S, which is in the middle of a turnaround plan, having seen former Dixons chief executive Katie Bickerstaffe, EY veteran Pip McCrostie and former Dixons Carphone finance director Humphrey Singer join this year.

“I am delighted that Justin has agreed to join us,” M&S chief executive Steve Rowe said.

“As we navigate the challenges ahead it will be enormously helpful to have his experience, wisdom and insight on the board.

“Many colleagues remember his time at M&S and will warmly welcome him back.”

King added: “Having worked there 15 years ago, M&S has a very special place in my affections. I look forward to joining the board and supporting Steve in the turnaround that he is leading.”

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