LONDON and NEW YORK, May 17, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Clayton, Dubilier & Rice, the pioneering private equity firm recognized for combining operating management skills and investment capabilities, today announced that Sir Terry Leahy, former chief executive of Tesco plc, has become a senior CD&R advisor.
In his 32-year career at Tesco, Mr. Leahy served in a number of senior positions, including chief executive officer from 1997 until March of this year. He is recognized for transforming the supermarket industry in the UK and building Tesco into one of the world's leading retailers. During Mr. Leahy's 14 years as CEO, Tesco more than quadrupled sales (from 13.9 billion pounds to 62.5 billion pounds) and EBITDA (from 1.1 billion pounds to 4.7 billion pounds). Over the same period, the company's market capitalization grew from 8 billion pounds to 35 billion pounds.
Mr. Leahy's leadership tenure was characterized by numerous innovations. He globalized Tesco, increasing the number of foreign stores from 190 to more than 2,300 in 13 different countries, including Thailand, Korea and China. He introduced new products, store formats, lines of business and pioneered new ways to engage customers, including developing TescoClubcard, the customer loyalty scheme that today provides valuable insights into shopping habits of approximately half of all UK households.
"We are delighted to welcome Terry to CD&R. He is an outstanding business leader and our portfolio companies will benefit from his experience building and growing an exceptional international company," said Donald J. Gogel, President and Chief Executive Officer of CD&R. "Private equity's potential to unlock entrepreneurial energy and to serve as a catalyst for constructive change will be a powerful platform for him to continue what he does best: help businesses take on new challenges, think and act differently, and operate more effectively."
"I am very pleased to be joining a group that has demonstrated time and again the ability to build better businesses," Mr. Leahy commented. "CD&R has unrivalled operating prowess and an exceptional team whose commitment to superior management practices, creativity and problem solving I share."
"Terry's leadership philosophy, based on an in-depth understanding of customer needs and executing meticulously against those needs, lines up well with CD&R's operationally-focused private equity model," said Roberto Quarta, Partner and Chairman of CD&R in Europe. "His international experience will also be of great value as our portfolio businesses capitalize on the opportunities of the more globalized business environment."
Mr. Leahy joins the London office of CD&R where he will work alongside CD&R operating partners Fred Kindle, former chief executive of ABB; Vindi Banga, former head of Unilever's Food and Home and Personal Care businesses; and Mr. Quarta, former chairman and chief executive officer of BBA. Mr. Leahy's primary focus will be advising portfolio companies on operational and related issues and assisting in evaluating investment opportunities. Jack Welch and A.G. Lafley, respectively former leaders of General Electric and Procter & Gamble, work with CD&R in a similar capacity.
Mr. Leahy was chosen as Britain's "Business Leader of the Year" in 2003 and the Fortune European Businessman of the Year for 2004. In 2005, he was selected as Britain's most admired business leader by Management Today. He was granted freedom of the city of Liverpool and knighted in 2002. He was chancellor of UMIST, his alma mater, from 2002 until 1 October 2004, when he became a co-chancellor of the newly-formed University of Manchester. He was honored with a Doctor of Science from Cranfield University in June 2007.
About Clayton, Dubilier & Rice, LLC
Founded in 1978, Clayton, Dubilier & Rice, LLC is a private equity firm with an investment strategy predicated on building stronger, more profitable businesses. CD&R has managed the investment of approximately $15 billion in 48 U.S. and European businesses representing a broad range of industries with an aggregate transaction value of approximately $80 billion. The Firm has offices in New York and London. For more information, please visit http://www.cdr-inc.com.
Contact: Thomas C. Franco +1-212-407-5225 firstname.lastname@example.org Philip Gawith +44(0)20-3370-0013 PMG@stockwellgroup.com
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