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Tesco boss’s pay doubles to £10m

Ken Murphy
Mr Murphy joined the retail giant in October 2020 - PARSONS MEDIA/Reuters

The chief executive of Tesco has seen his pay double to almost £10m after the supermarket chain posted a surge in profits last year.

Ken Murphy received a total of £9.93m over the last financial year according to the supermarket’s latest annual report, up from £4.95m in 2023.

The bulk of Mr Murphy’s latest pay package, who joined the retail giant in October 2020, comprised £8.3m in bonuses, while he also received a base salary of £1.64m.

Tesco’s chief financial officer Imran Nawaz also enjoyed an increase, as his pay rose from £2.27m to £4.95m during the period.

It comes after the supermarket posted a jump in profits to £2.3bn in the year to February 2024, compared to £882m a year earlier.

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This was driven by a 7.4pc rise in sales to £61.5bn, as Tesco tightened its grip on the grocery market by maintaining a market share of 27pc, according to Kantar.

Alison Platt, the chair of Tesco’s remuneration committee, said: “Our remuneration policy reflects the complexities of managing a business of the size and scale of Tesco, and is comparable to policies offered by other FTSE 50 companies.

“A large proportion of the total package has been achieved thanks to both Ken Murphy and Imran Nawaz achieving stretching targets in a highly competitive sector and working to create value for customers, colleagues, suppliers, communities and shareholders.”

However, Mr Murphy’s £10m pay package drew criticism from campaigners, who accused the supermarket of paying bosses disproportionately high sums despite the cost of living crisis.

Luke Hildyard, executive director of the High Pay Centre think tank, said: “You couldn’t really get a better indicator of how the UK economy serves the interests of the super-rich at the expense of everybody else than this.”

Ms Platt said: “Tesco remains committed to a competitive and fair reward package for all colleagues and this year we have invested a record £300m in a pay rise for our UK hourly-paid colleagues, as well as significantly enhancing the range of wellbeing benefits we offer.”

The row over executive remuneration comes as Tesco battles thousands of equal pay claims from current and former workers, who argue that work done in its stores should be considered equal to that carried out by workers in its distribution centres.

Tesco addressed the litigation threat in its accounts, claiming it intends to defend the claims “vigorously”.