Blog: Another testing AGM for Sir Stuart

Joe Ayling | 8 July 2009

Today (8 July) just-style is reporting from the AGM of clothing giant Marks and Spencer in London, whose boss Sir Stuart Rose is under the spotlight for a second year running.

Sir Stuart was last year elected executive chairman of the retailer, in addition to his ongoing chief executive duties.

Some shareholders contested the dual role at the time, saying it was against corporate governance best practice, and Sir Stuart faces their concerns once again a year later.

The Local Authority Pension Fund Forum (LAPFF) will today table a resolution calling for the chairman and chief executive roles to be split, according to the Press Association. They, along with some other shareholder groups, want to see an independent chairman at M&S before Sir Stuart's July 2011 succession.

Whether the resolution is passed, however, is another matter given M&S' return to quarterly sales growth last week. The company is not immune from the effects of the UK recession though, and like-for-like sales decreased 1.4% for the period.

Sir Stuart will need support from his closest allies, along with some clever soundbites, as he prepares for another testing AGM.

By Joe Ayling, news editor.


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