Former Marks & Spencer boss Lord Rose is £3 million richer after grocery delivery firm Ocado struck a ground-breaking deal with a giant US supermarket.
Lord Rose is chairman of Ocado, the FTSE 250 firm which has unveiled a partnership with America’s second-largest supermarket group, Kroger, to use its technology.
The news sent Ocado’s share price soaring 44 per cent on Thursday and means that Ocado, run by founder Tim Steiner, is now valued at £5.3 billion – more than M&S at £4.7 billion.
Rosy: The Ocado chairman and former Marks & Spencer boss has shares worth £10 million
Lord Rose was chief executive of M&S for six years until 2010. He remained as executive chairman until the following year and also led the pro-EU campaign Britain Stronger in Europe.
He has 1.2 million shares in Ocado, which are now worth almost £10 million. He bought 750,000 when he joined Ocado in 2013 and was gifted 450,000 shares for a nominal sum.
The fact that Ocado is now worth more than High Street stalwart M&S is a reflection of the changing retail environment.
Ocado made a small loss last year. Investors waited years for its first overseas deal to materialise.
Now it has struck four in rapid succession, helping the shares to surge 175 per cent in a year.
In the fast lane: The fact that Ocado is now worth more than High Street stalwart M&S is a reflection of the changing retail environment
It is now in contention for promotion to the FTSE 100, while M&S is at risk of dropping out of the top tier for the first time since the index was established in 1984.
It would mark a major fall from grace for the fashion and food giant, which is due to reveal full-year profit figures on Wednesday.