Canadian Businessman W. Galen Weston Has Died

Billionaire businessman W. Galen Weston, who oversaw a Canadian-based retail empire that included Loblaw grocery stores and clothing chain Holt Renfrew, has died at age 80.

Weston built an international business network, including food, retail and real estate companies, that made him one of the richest Canadians with an estimated net worth of $10.7 billion, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.

The family retail empire also includes Britain’s Selfridges, Brown Thomas in Ireland and de Bijenkorf in the Netherlands.

Born in Buckinghamshire, England on October 29, 1940, Weston was the youngest of nine children in a prominent family. His father, Willard Garfield Weston, served as a member of the British Parliament during the Second World War.

W. Galen Weston graduated from the University of Western Ontario in 1962. He took over the family business in the early 1970s. He is credited with saving Loblaw (TSX:L) from bankruptcy and turning it into the country’s largest grocer. He retired in 2016.