The EG Group, run by Blackburn's billionaire Issa brothers, has appointed the former chief executive of Marks and Spencer as chairman, with immediate effect.

The global convenience and fuel retailer, which has more than 6,000 sites in 10 countries including the UK and Ireland, the US, Australia, Germany, Italy, France and Benelux, appointed Lord Stuart Rose to help provide insight and support, as the Blackburn brothers look to move forward with their development plans.

Lord Rose said: “I am delighted to chair the board of EG Group and I look forward to working with the board and management, including fellow non-executive John Carey, in the next stage of the development of a world-class, global scale retail business.

“The Issa brothers are great British entrepreneurs of enormous drive, vision and ambition.

"EG’s board has asked me to develop appropriate governance structures for a business of this scale.

"The business has exciting development plans and exceptional prospects in the years to come.”

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Lord Rose has worked in the retail sector for more than 40 years.

Having started his career at Marks and Spencer plc, he left to join the Burton Group in 1989, becoming a director in 1993.

Following the Group’s demerger in 1997 he became chief executive of Argos plc during the bid by GUS.

In 1998 he became chief executive of Booker plc which was merged with the Iceland Group in 2000.

He then became chief executive of Arcadia Group plc in November 2000 and left in December 2002 following the sale of the business.

Lord Rose was named chief executive of Marks and Spencer plc in May 2004 and became Chairman in 2008, standing down in January 2011.

He was chairman of The British Fashion Council from 2004-2008, chairman of Business in the Community from 2008-2010, a non-executive director of land securities from 2003-2013, and chairman of Fat Face from 2013-2020.

He currently serves as chairman of Ocado plc, a role he will stand down from in May 2021, and is the continuing chairman of Zenith Automotive.

Jointly owned by the Issa brothers, Zuber and Mohsin, EG Group was started 20 years ago, and in 2019, reported sales in excess of €20 billion.

In addition to, and separate from their investment in EG Group, the Issa brothers and leading private equity firm, TDR agreed last October to acquire Asda, subject to regulatory approval, which is expected in the first half of this year

Zuber Issa CBE and Mohsin Issa CBE, co-founders and co-CEOs of EG Group, in a joint statement, said: “Stuart has an excellent record in business and we are delighted that he is joining us at this exciting time for EG Group.

"We have plans to create significant convenience and foodservice opportunities for our customers, and Stuart’s retail and consumer experience will provide invaluable insight and support.”

Gary Lindsay, Partner, TDR Capital, said: “The recruitment of Stuart Rose is a clear signal of our ambition for EG Group and our commitment to continuous improvement.”