Five big dates in history of Morrisons

Dalton Philips was ousted as Morrisons Chief Executive last March

Dalton Philips was ousted as Morrisons Chief Executive last March

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BRADFORD-based MORRISONS has endured a turbulent year as it faces up to the growing challenge from the discounters.

Here are five key dates in the recent history of Morrisons

David Potts, Morrisons new CEO

David Potts, Morrisons new CEO

March 2014: Morrisons, which was led at the time by chief executive Dalton Philips, issues a huge profit warning, compounding share price falls.

April 2014: Roger Owen, a former aide to Sir Ken Morrison, launches a blistering attack on the management team in The Yorkshire Post - saying that the once might Morrisons resembled a “supertanker heading towards an iceberg”.

July 2014 – Retail veteran Andrew Higginson is appointed deputy chairman and chairman elect. Speculation mounts that Mr Higginson is drawing up a list of replacements for Mr Philips, who faced withering crticism from Sir Ken Morrison at the AGM.

February 2015 – David Potts is appointed chief executive, after Mr Philips is ousted. He has more than 40 years experience in the retail sector and promises to return Morrisons to its core values with a focus on customer service.

Since then, Mr Potts has axed the majority of the management team he inherited and cut head office staff while adding 5,000 shop floor staff to improve customer service. He has also brought back staffed express checkouts and got rid of the overly complex computerised queue management system.

September 2015 - Morrisons announced the closure of 11 supermarkets putting 900 jobs at risk as it reported its latest slump in profits. Pre-tax profits for the half-year to August 2 fell 47​ per cent​ to £126​m while like-for-like sales for the period dropped 2.7​ per cent​ compared with the same period last year. New chief executive David Potts said the group faced a “long journey” to turn around its fortunes.

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