Chief executive and chairman

When Lord Harris of Peckham talks, people listen. Last year the Carpetright boss said he was trading through the worst conditions he has experienced in his 50 years of retailing. The comment was held up as a stark warning of the tough times to come.

Torrid times they may be - Carpetright like-for-likes slumped 15.1 per cent in the 25 weeks to April 25 - but they have helped the retailer cement its dominance of the floorings market this year.

And in such tough times Lord Harris is not a man to stand still. He has been linked with acquisitions of sizeable retailers such as Topps Tiles, made a decisive move back to the high street in May and changed Carpetright’s marketing stance, showing that he is not afraid to adapt.

Alongside Sir Philip Green he also helped spearhead the campaign against monthly rents, proving he is willing to get stuck into the most pressing issues on behalf of the sector.