Philip Green keeps promise to 'sort' pension problem

Simon Jack
Business editor

Image source, Getty Images

The BHS flagship store on Oxford Street is still boarded up.

The workers are long gone but the debate about the pension mess that was left behind and the corporate culture which let it all happen has carried on.

Sir Philip was vilified by public and politicians alike as a mascot for corporate greed and he featured as a bogeyman in speeches by the prime minister.

Throughout, Sir Philip promised to "sort", in his words, the pension problem.

Those close to him were confident he would make good on that and today he did improve the lot of the pensioners.

Although this settlement was described as voluntary, he was being vigorously pursued by the Pensions Regulator and faced months or even years more in dispute.

The regulator will see this as establishing an important precedent for getting former owners to pay up when pension schemes go bad.

Image source, Reuters

He has not enjoyed the last three years one bit and has not said anything publicly today.

Privately he says he wants to return to being a private businessman.

In truth, he was never really that, he was not shy about living the high life quite publicly.

According to the Sunday Times Rich List this sum represents just over 10% of his net worth.

His reputation and his knighthood were probably worth that to him. Whether he can hang on to either is still not - in his words - "sorted".