Statement on Primark Founder Mr. Arthur Ryan
Dublin, 8th July 2019: Primark is deeply saddened to confirm that Arthur Ryan, the company’s founder, Chairman and former CEO, passed away today after a short illness. Mr. Ryan was 83 years old.
Paul Marchant, CEO, Primark issued the following statement:
“On behalf of everyone at Primark, we are greatly saddened by the passing of our founder and chairman, Arthur Ryan. We want to extend our deepest sympathies to Arthur’s family at this sad time. Arthur Ryan was a truly gifted retailer and a visionary leader.
“He was a true retail pioneer. He innovated and was never complacent, despite many successes. He challenged us all to be the best we can be. His drive and passion was always shown alongside great humility, integrity and support for our people. All of these characteristics remain guiding principles at Primark today.
“Throughout his entire career, Arthur remained deeply connected to the business and the customer, regularly visiting stores and walking the shop floor. His legacy will continue in the business that he founded and built. Those of us who worked closely with him will cherish his friendship and wisdom and he will be hugely missed by all of his Primark family.”
From George Weston, CEO of Associated British Foods:
“From the Board of ABF and on behalf of the Weston family, our deepest sympathies go out to Arthur’s wife, Alma, and all his family and friends at this very sad time. We will all greatly miss his larger than life presence, his sharp wit and his friendship.
“Arthur Ryan will be remembered as one of the great giants of retailing. When my Grandfather, Garfield Weston and Uncle, Galen Weston recruited Arthur to run Penneys in 1969 with only one store in Dublin, they knew they were hiring an exceptional trader. But what three generations of Westons learnt over the following decades was that Arthur was also a great leader and business builder, driven every day by a relentless desire to delight his customers.
“Arthur Ryan made fashion accessible to all and his legacy looms large. He built a phenomenal world-class retailer, the foundations of which will always belong to Ireland.”