Posted on Wednesday 29 January 2014 by Ulster Business
Since he took the role in 2004, Sainsbury's has seen its underlying profits almost treble to £756m, while sales have risen to £25.6bn from £16.1bn a decade ago. King will leave the company after its AGM in July.
The company's chairman, David Tyler, described King as a "truly exceptional leader, who has reshaped Sainsbury's during his 10 years as CEO" and said he left a lasting legacy at the company.
The chairman said Mike Coupe was the natural choice to take the company forward as "nobody knows Sainsbury's - or the industry" better than him.
King himself said: "This was not an easy decision for me to make, and in truth it will never feel like the right time to leave a company like Sainsbury's. It has been a privilege to have led the Company for the past 10 years and I am incredibly proud of our achievements in that time. I am confident that under Mike's leadership the business will go from strength to strength."
Coupe added: "It's an absolute honour to be appointed as the new CEO of Sainsbury's in this, the Company's 145th year, and at a time when thanks to Justin's leadership, we have been consistently outperforming the market. I very much look forward to building on that success for our customers, colleagues, suppliers and shareholders."