Deathwatch: Morrisons chief executive quits

morrisons 300x300 Dalton Philips, the chief executive of Morrisons, is quitting his job after the supermarket had a drop in sales over Christmas. With a name like 'Dalton Philips', we hope he's off to become a diamond thief or a man who will seduce ex-pats in the Mediterranean.

Anyway, onto the serious business, Morrisons boss of 5 years has gone after he failed to get anyone interested in shopping at the chain. Of course, they're not the only ones who have suffered a drop in sales - Tesco were down on like-for-likes sales, but they've already cleared out a load of dead wood. Sainsbury's have also reported a fall too.

Morrisons have revealed that total sales (excluding fuel in the six weeks to January 4th) were down by 1.3% and like-for-like sales (excluding fuel) had fallen by 3.1%.

In a statement, Andrew Higginson, who will take over as chairman at Morrisons (you may remember him as being the finance director at Tesco, which bodes well, doesn't it?), said: "In the next chapter of Morrisons development, we need to return the business to growth. The board believes this is best done under new leadership."

“I would like to thank Dalton for his contribution as chief executive. He has brought great personal qualities and values to his leadership of the business, having had to manage against a background of considerable industry turmoil and change. He deserves particular credit for facing into and dealing with the pricing issues that have now become evident, for taking the business into the convenience and online channels, and for the steps he has taken to modernise the company’s operating systems."

Philips himself said: "Morrisons is a great company with exceptionally talented people and I have been very proud to have worked with them. Over the last five years, we have made many improvements to the business and given Morrisons strong foundations for the future. I wish every success to the company and all of my colleagues, who have, and continue to work so hard."

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