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46 Sir Stuart Rose (10)

Executive chairman, Marks & Spencer

Marks & Spencer’s smooth-talking executive chairman has slipped 36 places this year, after passing over his chief executive baton to successor Marc Bolland in May 2010, but Sir Stuart Rose remains one of the industry’s most influential figuraes.

He has kept his hand on the tiller at M&S during the crucial handover period to Bolland, helping to grow its market share across all categories in the run-up to the launch of Bolland’s new strategy for M&S this October, which turned out to be strikingly similar to Rose’s own.

Although he claims to be hiding away, Rose was appointed to private equity firm Bridgepoint’s European Advisory Committee in September, where he will help to provide ‘consumer insight’ for its investments.

Rose promises to retire from full-time employment in 2011, and to retire altogether from fashion retail, but Drapers has yet to be convinced.

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