Sainsbury family

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The Sainsbury family (also Lord Sainsbury and family and incorrectly the Sainsbury's family) founded Sainsbury's, the UK's second-largest supermarket chain. Today, the family has many interests, including business, politics, philanthropy, arts, and sciences.

Principal members of the Sainsbury family[edit]

Principal members of the founding family of the UK supermarket chain Sainsbury's are:

  • John James Sainsbury (c.1844 – c.1928), co-founder of the Sainsbury's supermarket chain
  • Mary Ann Sainsbury née Staples (c.1849 – c.1927), wife of John James Sainsbury and co-founder of the Sainsbury's supermarket chain
    • John Benjamin Sainsbury (1871–1956), eldest son of John James and Mary Ann Sainsbury
      • Alan John Sainsbury, Baron Sainsbury (1902–1998), son of John Benjamin Sainsbury, a Labour life peer 1962 as Lord Sainsbury, later joined the SDP.
        • John Davan Sainsbury, Baron Sainsbury of Preston Candover KG (1927–), son of Alan Sainsbury, a Conservative life peer (Baron Sainsbury of Preston Candover), married to former ballerina Anya Linden
          • The Hon. Sarah Sainsbury, daughter of John Davan Sainsbury, married to Hon. Robert Butler-Sloss, son of Elizabeth Butler-Sloss, Baroness Butler-Sloss
          • The Hon. John Julian Sainsbury, son of John Davan Sainsbury
          • The Hon. Mark Sainsbury, son of John Davan Sainsbury
        • The Hon. Simon Sainsbury (1930–2006), son of Alan Sainsbury, quiet philanthropist who gave away £100 million.[1] Entered into a civil partnership with Stewart Grimshaw shortly before his death.
        • The Right Honourable Sir Timothy Sainsbury (1932–), son of Alan Sainsbury, former Tory MP and Minister, married to Susan Mary Sainsbury (formerly Mitchell) (1939–)
          • Camilla Sainsbury, daughter of Timothy Sainsbury, married to Conservative, then Labour, MP The Rt Hon. Shaun Woodward
          • James Sainsbury, son of Timothy Sainsbury
          • Alexander Sainsbury, son of Timothy Sainsbury
          • Jessica de Frankopan, daughter of Timothy Sainsbury and married to Peter de Frankopan Subic Zrinski (né Doimi de Lupis)
        • Paulette Sainsbury, daughter of Alan Sainsbury (1946–); known by married name Paulette Anderson
          • Cairistiona Anderson, daughter of Paulette Anderson
          • Lindsey Anderson, daughter of Paulette Anderson
      • Sir Robert Sainsbury (1907–2000), son of John Benjamin Sainsbury, who along with his wife Lisa née Van den Bergh (1912–2014)[2] began the collection of modern and tribal art housed at the Sainsbury Centre for Visual Arts in Norwich
        • Elizabeth Sainsbury (Elizabeth Clark 19 July 1938 – 14 August 1977), daughter of Robert Sainsbury
          • James Clark, son of Elizabeth Clark
          • Alexander Clark, son of Elizabeth Clark
        • David Sainsbury, Baron Sainsbury of Turville (1940–), son of Robert Sainsbury, Labour life peer (Baron Sainsbury of Turville)
          • The Hon. Clare Sainsbury, daughter of David Sainsbury, wrote Martian In The Playground, to help people understand Asperger syndrome
          • The Hon. Anya Lucy Sainsbury, daughter of David Sainsbury
          • The Hon. Francesca Sainsbury, daughter of David Sainsbury
        • Celia Sainsbury, daughter of Robert Sainsbury, married name Celia Blakey
          • Simon Blakey, son of Celia Blakey
          • Michael Robert Blakey, son of Celia Blakey
        • Annabel Sainsbury, daughter of Robert Sainsbury, married name Annabel Kanabus, former director of the HIV/AIDS charity AVERT and now director of the charity GHE
          • Jason Kanabus (1976–2006), son of Annabel Sainsbury, left fortune to Prince's Trust to help young people become established in farming
          • Adrian Kanabus, son of Annabel Sainsbury
    • Arthur Sainsbury (1880–1962)
      • James Sainsbury (1909–1984)

Family involvement in Sainsbury's[edit]

No family member works for the company, although John Davan Sainsbury is the Life President of the firm.

The last family member to work for the company was Tim Sainsbury who retired as a non-executive director in 1999. The last family chairman was David Sainsbury who retired as chairman of the company in 1998. This brought to an end 129 years of management of the group by the Sainsbury family. As a government minister since 1998, his shares were held in a blind trust until 2007.

Family shareholding in Sainsbury's[edit]

The equity interest in Sainsbury's held by the family as of May 2011 is 15%. The family sold down their stake from 35% in 2005. The largest family shareholders are Lord Sainsbury of Turville with 4.99% and Lord Sainsbury of Preston Candover, who controls just under 3% of the company, and benefits from 1.6% of the equity included in the above. The Sunday Times reported in September 2006 that "The Sainsbury family continues to [sell] shares in the £6.2 billion retailer... and for the first time their combined holding has fallen below 20%.”

The largest shareholder is the Qatar Investment Authority, the investment vehicle of the Qatari royal family of the Gulf Kingdom, who as of May 2011 holds 25.999% of the company.

Lord Sainsbury of Preston Candover's decision to split his 3.89% holding in Sainsbury's between other members of his family in December 2006 suggests that the family may not have sold as many shares as previously thought. The other theory could be that the most senior members of the family, with previous stakes of over 3% (the reportable stock exchange shareholding threshold), could have simply transferred some of their shares to their children (who previously held few shares), rather than having sold shares onto the open market. However, some shares which have been sold were definitely sold to the open market (according to Miss Judith Portrait, the trustee for many Sainsbury family settlements).

This fall from around 35% increases the possibility of any takeover attempt succeeding. However, the Sainsbury family have managed to use their remaining stake to block takeover bids in the past, as demonstrated by the two failed takeover bids in 2007. A hostile bid for the company may encounter difficulties, without the full support of the Sainsbury family. The halving of the generous dividend yield in recent years may have been a significant factor regarding the family's decision to reduce their shareholdings.

Buildings set up by the Sainsbury family[edit]

The Sainsbury family has also set up a number of buildings, to house their various interests. These are:

The Sainsbury family charitable interests[edit]

Eighteen of the grant-making trusts set up by members of the Sainsbury family, are known collectively as the Sainsbury Family Charitable Trusts.[3] Institutions whose creation they fostered include the following:

Annabel Sainsbury (married name Annabel Kanabus) set up, with her husband, the international AIDS charity AVERT, and the charity GHE.[4] Adrian Kanabus has set up Adrians Charity.[5]

Celia Sainsbury (married name Celia Blakey) set up the Celia Blakey Charitable Trust which makes grants to various other charities.

The Sainsbury family are also major benefactors to English Heritage and the National Trust for Places of Historic Interest or Natural Beauty.

Sainsbury family interests in politics[edit]

The Sainsbury family also has varying political interests.


  1. ^ "Obituaries: Simon Sainsbury". The Times. News International. 2006-10-07. Retrieved 2006-10-30.
  2. ^ Telegraph: Lady Sainsbury – obituary
  3. ^ "The Sainsbury Family Charitable Trusts". Retrieved 2009-10-25.
  4. ^ "GHE – Global Health Education". Archived from the original on 2012-01-08. Retrieved 2011-11-21. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  5. ^ "Charity Commission charity no 1120412". UK Charity Commission.

External links[edit]