Deep dive: The new Asda – saddled with debt or a return to former glory?


As reports emerge that chief executive Roger Burnley is stepping down, Retail Week looks at what Asda under their controversial new owners the Issa brothers will look like. 

Blackburn-born brothers Mohsin and Zuber Issa became the most-talked about pair in retail when they won the hard-fought battle to buy Asda in October.

The £6.8bn deal, which brings to an end the two-decade ownership of Asda by the world’s biggest retailer Walmart, will be the largest leveraged buyout in UK retail since KKR’s acquisition of Boots in 2007.

However, concerns are rife about how the Issas, who have remained tight-lipped since the acquisition was revealed, plan to run Asda and what impact such large debt levels will have on the retailer. Fears have been intensified as Roger Burnley, the well-respected chief executive of Asda, is understood to be standing down from his role.

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