His own son William owns 2.1m of his own, giving them a combined stake of £11.9m in what has proven to be the more successful chain.
It’s now emerged that a few months before Sir Ken made these comments he was buying shares in Sainsbury’s.
Speaking about the Sainsbury’s share purchase, Sir Ken told The Times: “It is a well-run company”.
Sir Ken holds 2.6 million shares worth £6m and has given Mike Coupe, the chief executive at Sainsbury’s, his public backing.
The revelation that Sir Ken is betting on the success of Sainsbury’s over Morrisons should come as no surprise to investors.
This was in stark contrast to his remarks at a previous AGM when he described the strategy under sacked boss Dalton Philips as “bulls****”. Sainbury’s share price has risen 3.5 per cent this year, while Morrisons has been relegated from the FTSE 100 as its share price decreased by 19.3 per cent in the same period. Profits have collapsed, the group has been forced to sell its loss-making convenience store portfolio, and the dividend has been cut.
The 84-year old former Morrisons’ chairman is thought have acquired numerous Sainsbury shares in April 2014, as his frustrations with the former management team of Morrisons apparently peaked.
Benefits at Morrisons have gotten hammered in the midst of extraordinary competition from rebate retailers, Aldi and Lidl.