In assuming his new role as executive chairman, the younger Weston will retain his responsibilities as Loblaw president.
The elder Weston, now 75, assumed executive control of the company in 1974 when he succeeded his father.
“Following my own father’s tradition of stepping down at the age of 75, I see this as a good time to create space for the next generation,” said Weston. “I have absolute confidence in my son and the George Weston Ltd. board and leadership. I look forward to using my time to focus on the exciting opportunities ahead in our luxury business and some truly groundbreaking potential with our charitable foundation.”
For more than four decades as chairman, Weston established an extraordinary record of achievement, according to the company, taking a sprawling portfolio and focusing on remaking Loblaw into the nation’s top retailer and building Weston into one of North America’s largest food processing companies.
During his tenure as executive chairman, he oversaw the introduction of some of Canada’s most innovative brands and retail concepts, including President’s Choice, Joe Fresh, No Frills and Real Canadian Superstore.
Over the same time period, the company created hundreds of thousands of jobs, and the Weston Foundation and the Weston Group of Companies together have donated more than half a billion dollars to the benefit of Canadian communities.