The founder of Jysk, Lars Larsen, has passed away aged 71.
This morning (19th August), Lars Larsen – or The Tradesman, as he was best known among colleagues – passed away peacefully in his home near Silkeborg, Denmark, surrounded by his closest family. Lars leaves behind his wife Kristine, their two children and four grandchildren.
“Today we have lost our father, husband and grandfather, and Denmark has lost a truly remarkable tradesman," says Lars' son Jacob Brunsborg, who took over the position of chairman of Lars Larsen Group following his father’s withdrawal in June after he was diagnosed with liver cancer. "He will be missed by all of us, and once we have mourned our great loss, we will do our best to continue the development of his impressive life’s work.”
Earlier this year, Lars played a key role in the celebration of Jysk's 40th anniversary, and personally cut the ribbon to open the first Jysk store in Ireland, thereby completing the retailer's presence in all major European countries.
Jan Bøgh, CEO and president, says: “Before stepping down as chairman, Lars Larsen was part of the decision to merge the two independent business units in Jysk Group into one. I will continue to focus my energy on this very important task to ensure that within a few years we will have a united and even stronger Jysk, which in the spirit of Lars Larsen will continue to provide great offers for our customers."
In the UK, Jysk has announced an ambitious five-year growth plan that will see its store portfolio increase by almost 350% to some 52 stores by August 2024.
Country Manager for Jysk UK, David Ashton, comments: “It is a sad day for all at Jysk with the passing away of Lars Larsen, our founder and owner. The values and culture that he created more than 40 years ago is embedded within everything we do today.
“A true tradesman, he started from absolutely nothing to build the Jysk Group into the huge organisation of more than 2800 stores today, across 54 countries.
“If you ever had the privilege to meet him you will know that he was warm, welcoming and incredibly down to earth. Quite a special man, and somebody for us all to really look up to.”