Supermarket CEO remuneration in the UK has come under fresh scrutiny of late, following bumper pay packets for Tesco’s Ken Murphy and M&S boss Stuart Machin. In both cases, the salary increases were fuelled by share payments and performance bonuses, rather than rises in basic pay.

So how much are the supermarket CEOs paid? And by how much has their pay increased?

From the lowest to the highest, here are the salaries of the UK’s leading supermarket bosses

Ryan McDonnell

Ryan McDonnell, CEO, Lidl GB

Pay 2023: £855k
Pay 2022: £1.5m

Lidl GB boss Ryan McDonnell was only promoted to the CEO role on 1 March (at the start of the new 2024 financial year) so the reduced pay of the ‘highest paid’ director likely reflects the promotion of previous CEO Christian Hartnagel to run Lidl Germany before the end of the 2023 financial year, meaning this may have been McDonnell’s salary as deputy CEO. In the meantime the GB operation reported a loss of £76m after tax, down from a £41m profit in 2022, despite the discounter growing its market share from 6.2% to 7.1%, so it will be interesting to see how well  remunerated McDonnell is (and how well Lidl has performed of course) when the 2024 results are published.


zuber and mohsin issa3

Mohsin and Zuber Issa, co-owners, Asda

Pay 2022: £1.3m for highest-paid director
Pay 2021: n/a

The billionaire Issa brothers took 39th place in this year’s Sunday Times Rich List, but it is tricky to determine how much they take as a salary from Asda. Most recent accounts for Asda at Companies House show the highest-paid director – most likely Mohsin Issa – took home £1.3m in the year ending 31 December 2022. That’s down from £5.4m in the previous year, when Roger Burnley would have been highest-paid director, due to share awards falling from £2.8m to zero.


Sharon White portrait in Waitrose

Sharon White, chairman, John Lewis Partnership

Pay 2024: £1.1m
Pay 2023: £1.1m

Outgoing John Lewis chairman Sharon White has taken home a stable pay packet over the past two years, as she voluntarily chose not to accept a pay review in 2023 or 2024. In 2024, she earns a basic pay of £990k, topped up by a pension contribution and the cash value of other benefits. 


Tim Steiner 2023 ocado

Tim Steiner, CEO, Ocado

Pay 2023: £1.96m
Pay 2022: £2m

The salary of Ocado boss Tim Steiner declined marginally, from just over £2m to £1.96m, last year. It’s a far cry from the pandemic-driven highs of 2020, when he took home £58.7m – one of the highest ever pay packets of a FTSE 100 boss – after reaping the benefits of a bonus scheme pegged to share prices.


Read more: Who are the UK supermarket CEOs?

But this year, he’s due to get a rise. In April, his basic pay edged up by 4% to £824,570. And from this year, a new policy will allow for a 400% base award in the performance share plan. The total maximum award will rise to 1,800% for 2024, and sit at 600% for future years. The 18x multiplier, which means Steiner could earn up to £14.8m on top of his basic salary, drew ire from shareholders.

This is all conditional on performance, though. Shares, which currently sit at 355p, must hit 2969p in three years – a much tougher feat to achieve outside of the pandemic.


Giles Hurley

Giles Hurley, CEO, Aldi UK

Pay 2022: £2.2m
Pay 2021: £2.2m

Most recent accounts for Aldi in the UK – which cover the year to 31 December 2022 – suggest little change in the salary of CEO Giles Hurley. The highest-paid director received £2.212m in 2022 and £2.214m in 2021. That was despite turnover increasing by 13% in that period, resulting in a profit of £109m after tax. The discounter has not yet filed accounts for 2023 at Companies House.



David Potts, ex-CEO, Morrisons

Pay 2022/23: £2.8m
Pay 2021/22: £1.7m

New Morrisons CEO Rami Baitieh is yet to complete a year in the post, so his salary hasn’t been disclosed in accounts. However, his predecessor David Potts took home £2.8m in his final full year at the helm, according to the retailer’s most recent annual report. That was up from £1.7m in the previous year – an increase that was entirely driven by £1.1m in share-based payments.


Tarsem Dhaliwal & Simon Gunning

Tarsem Dhaliwal, group CEO, Iceland Foods

Pay 2022/23: £3.8m
Pay 2021/22: £3.8m

Richard Walker may be the public face of Iceland but, as group CEO, Tarsem Dhaliwal is likely the highest-paid director. As such, he has taken home a pay packet of £3.8m in the latest two years covered by Iceland’s accounts at Companies House.




Stuart Machin

Stuart Machin, CEO, M&S Food

Pay 2023/24: £4.7m
Pay 2022/23: £2.7m

The M&S boss added more than £2m to his overall pay package last year to £4.7m due to a sharp increase in bonuses and share awards.

Stuart Machin’s long-term share awards rose from £878k to £2.25m, partly driven by a near 50% jump in M&S’s share price since their award. Machin also received 96% of his performance-related bonus, which rose from £1.08m to £1.57m.

His basic salary rose to £818k from £669k and will rise again to £849k in the coming year.


Simon Roberts headshot IGD

Simon Roberts, chief executive, Sainsbury’s

Pay 2023/24: £4.9m
Pay 2022/23: £5.2m

Basic pay for Sainsbury’s boss Simon Roberts rose by 4% to £941,850 last year. However, his annual bonus decreased from £2.5m to £1.8m, resulting in a net £300k fall in his total remuneration package.

For 2023/24, the maximum annual bonus award opportunity available to Roberts – based on profit, retail free cash flow and strategic scorecard – was 220% of his base salary.

His basic salary will increase by 4% once again in the 2024/25 financial year to £979,524.


Ken Murphy

Ken Murphy, CEO, Tesco

Pay 2023/24: £9.9m
Pay 2022/23: £4.4m

The man at the helm of the UK’s largest supermarket, Tesco, more than doubled his pay last year to just shy of £10m.

However, Ken Murphy’s fixed pay declined from £1.7m to £1.6m in that time period. The gain was instead driven by hitting performance targets and the vesting of share awards.

Murphy was awarded 95% of his maximum bonus, resulting in his payout rising from £2.73m to £3.38m. Meanwhile, the vesting of shares awarded under Tesco’s 2021 performance share plan was worth £4.91m.