// John Lewis paid out £939,773 to former managing director Paula Nickolds
// Nickolds announced her departure in January after weak Christmas sales
John Lewis has handed an almost £1 million payout to its former managing director Paula Nickolds.
The retailer revealed that it paid out £939,773 to Nickolds, who exited in January following lacklustre Christmas sales.
Nickolds had worked for the business for 25 years in various roles before her departure.
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Nickolds was promoted to managing director of the department store in September 2016, and her departure was part of John Lewis Partnership’s management reshuffle and business consolidation, which was first announced last October.
The payout was in respect of her notice period, contributions to her legal fees and career development support.
The group also confirmed an £892,362 pay packet given to Rob Collins, who had been managing director of the partnership’s Waitrose grocery arm until he stepped down in October.
On Tuesday, John Lewis Partnership confirmed that 14,000 staff have been furloughed across the business due to the coronavirus lockdown, and that they will receive full contractual pay until the end of May.
The partnership also revealed mixed results in its trading since the end of January, due to the coronavirus pandemic, with Waitrose increasing eight per cent sales while John Lewis declined 17 per cent.
It also comes after partnership said it would pay out its lowest staff bonus since 1953 as it revealed a 23 per cent plunge in profits for the year to January 25.
John Lewis Partnership now anticipates “significant sales decline between April and June, and weak sales thereafter” and was planning for a “worst-case scenario” of full-year sales plunging 35 per cent at John Lewis and a “more modest decline” of less than five per cent at Waitrose.