M&S poaches John Lewis finance director Helen Weir

Emma Haslett
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Helen Weir is expected to work her six month notice period at John Lewis

Marks & Spencer has appointed John Lewis finance director Helen Weir as its own chief financial officer.

In a statement posted this afternoon, the retailer said Weir has yet to confirm a start date.

M&S' previous finance director, Alan Stewart, left suddenly in September to take up his new role at Tesco several months earlier than originally planned, after the supermarket discovered a £250m black hole in its accounts.

Weir joined John Lewis in 2012 from her previous role at Lloyds, but has form when it comes to retail: she has worked as group finance director of B&Q owner Kingfisher, and has also held positions at Unilever and McKinsey & Co.

Marc Bolland, M&S' chief executive, said he looked forward to Weir joining the team.

Helen as CFO. She is extremely well qualified, and brings a wealth of relevant financial, retail and consumer experience.

Weir added:

M&S is one of the UK’s great brands. This is an exciting time to be joining the company and I am delighted to be part of the team.

Weir is in for a busy few months - not only does she face helping to turn around one of British retail's great juggernauts, but last week she was also appointed a non-executive director of the Rugby Football Union. She's also on the board of drinks giant SAB Miller, and a trustee of Marie Curie Cancer Care.

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