Juan Roig

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Juan Roig
Juan Roig - 13.10.18 Visita B.L. Mercadona.Guadix 4.jpg
Juan Roig in October 2013
Juan Roig Alfonso

(1949-10-08) 8 October 1949 (age 69)
Valencia, Spain
ResidenceValencia, Spain
Alma materUniversity of Valencia
OccupationOwner & President of Mercadona
Net worthUS$4.1 billion (August 2018)[1]
Spouse(s)Hortensia Herrero

Juan Roig Alfonso (born 8 October 1949) is a Spanish billionaire businessman, president of Mercadona, the Spanish supermarket chain.

Early life[edit]

Juan Roig was born on 8 October 1949 in Valencia.[2] He studied in a Jesuit school in Valencia, then at a boarding school, and graduated in economics at Valencia, but was not an outstanding student.

His parents ran a chain of eight butchers' shops (Cárnicas Roig) in La Pobla de Farnals, later converted to grocery stores.[3]

Business career[edit]

With three of his five brothers, Juan Roig bought the shops from his parents in 1981. He largely bought out his brothers in 1991,[4] and went on to build up the Mercadona supermarket chain, which now runs over 1,400 stores.[3] His success in retail has been based on a risky strategy of competitive pricing,[5] and on technological innovations such as barcode scanners and automated distribution facilities.[4] He introduced full-time contracts for all employees in the late 1990s.[4]

Roig was awarded the Prince Felipe Prize for Business Excellence in 2010.[4]

Personal wealth[edit]

Forbes magazine in October 2013 reported that Roig was worth 5,800 million euros, the second largest fortune in Spain.[6] This in fact is the estimated value of the 78% stake in Mercadona jointly owned by himself and his wife. But since Mercadona shares are not publicly quoted, the figure is somewhat speculative.[3] As of July 2018, Forbes estimated his net worth at US$4.3 billion.[1] The shareholding yielded dividend income totalling over $400 million between 2006 and 2013 for Roig and his wife jointly.[4]

Personal and family life[edit]

Roig teaches at a school for young entrepreneurs on Saturdays. He plays paddle tennis and watches basketball. At university he met Hortensia Herrero, and they were married in 1973. They have had four children - Amparo, twins Hortensia and Carolina, and Juana - and seven grandchildren. His wife is now vice-president of Mercadona.[3] He is said to favour family ownership in business, provided that the family members contribute positively.[4]

He has been described as "shy, but a tough businessman" and as "a practical man, direct, austere, takes things seriously, his manner may appear cold if he does not trust the person he is talking to". Many aphorisms are ascribed to him, such as "in Spain we have to imitate the hard-working culture of the Chinese bazaars" and "you do not have to do a job that you like, but you have to make your job something you like doing".[3]


Through his wholly owned company Alquería Capital, Roig supports Proyecto Lanzadera, which helps young entrepreneurs set up their businesses and offers them space within the Lanzadera Business Centre, in Valencia.[7] He also sponsors a professional basketball team, called Valencia Basket.[3]


  1. ^ a b "Forbes profile: Juan Roig". Forbes. Retrieved 5 July 2018.
  2. ^ "Juan Roig". buscabiografias. Retrieved 18 October 2015.
  3. ^ a b c d e f Delgado, Cristina; Zafra, Ignacio (4 November 2013). "Juan Roig, el 'súper' del mercado (Juan Roig, the 'super' of the market)". El País (in Spanish).
  4. ^ a b c d e f Metcalf, Tom (14 May 2013). "Spanish Billionaires Hire 4,000 Amid Country's Job Slump". Bloomberg Business.
  5. ^ Delgado, Cristina (30 October 2013). "Amancio Ortega, el rico que vale por 15 (Amancio Ortega, the rich man worth more than [the next] 15". EL PAÍS (in Spanish).
  6. ^ "El dueño de Mercadona, Juan Roig, ya es la segunda fortuna española (The owner of Mercadona, Juan Roig, now has the second largest fortune in Spain)". El Mundo (in Spanish). 30 October 2013.
  7. ^ Pérez de Pablos, Susana (21 January 2013). "El nuevo proyecto "Lanzadera" dedicará tres millones a financiar a emprendedores (The new "Lanzadera" project will allocate three million [Euros] for financing entrepreneurs)". EL PAÍS (in Spanish).

Further reading[edit]