Marks & Spencer chairman Sir Stuart Rose sold 100,000 of his shares in the retailer yesterday – the day his successor Marc Bolland set out his vision for the business.

Rose sold at 410.7p, raising about £400,000. Although he retains 1.43m Marks & Spencer shares the timing of the deal has raised eyebrows as some ask whether it was a verdict on Bolland’s ideas.

Although Bolland’s new strategy is built on the same foundations as Rose’s – improvements in the UK combined with multichannel and international expansion – he also jettisoned some Rose initiatives such as the sale of technology in stores and cutting back on branded food lines.