// The future son-in-law of Mike Ashley is set to bank nearly £21 million in fees before he takes over as Frasers Group CEO
// Michael Murray will take over from Mike Ashley on May 1st
Mike Ashley’s future son-in-law will be paid over £20 million in consultancy fees before he takes over as CEO of Frasers Group next month.
32 year old Michael Murray, who is engaged to Ashley’s daughter Anna, currently holds the role of “head of elevation” at the retailer and has been in charge of all property deals.
Murray will become chief executive of the retail empire which owns Sports Direct, Flannels, House of Fraser and Evans Cycles at the beginning of next month after the tycoon steps down. He will become one of the youngest bosses in the FTSE250 when he does.
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As part of the transition, MM Prop Consultancy, a firm owned by Murray that has provided services to Frasers, will receive £20.9 million to terminate any agreements between the two companies and avoid a conflict of interest.
Frasers added: “The board has now completed its assessment, with the assistance of independent third-party experts.”
The board said the agreement had “delivered significant financial and strategic value” for the company, and Frasers also received a discount as the deal came to an end.
Mr Murray added he was “very excited to be leading Frasers in its next chapter.”
He has been credited with driving a strategy to win over younger shoppers, modernising Sports Direct stores and expanding its luxury offering while re-build relationships with big names including Nike and Adidas.
Last September, Ashley forced through controversial plans to hand Murray a bonus worth up to £100m if the retailer’s share price hits £15 for 30 consecutive trading days in the next four years.
However, at the time almost half of its shareholders revolted, and voting advisory groups lined up to oppose Murray’s bonus, due to its size and focus on the share price, which they said can change independently of a chief executive’s performance.