Next boss Lord Wolfson saw his pay increase to £4.5m last year as chain defied gloom on High Street

Boost: Next expects profits to hit £960m this year

The boss of Next saw his pay increase to £4.5m last year as the chain defied gloom on the High Street.

Lord Wolfson, who has been praised for his leadership of one of Britain’s most successful retailers, was paid a base salary of £908,000, a bonus of £1.4m, share awards of £2m, and £172,000 in pension and benefits. 

His overall package rose 80 per cent from £2.5m the previous year.

The figures, in the company’s annual report, came just weeks after Wolfson, 56, declared it ‘feels like we are now entering a new era’ with inflation on the retreat and the economy recovering.

Next, which he has steered since August 2001, expects profits to hit £960m this year.

Tesco, Marks & Spencer and B&Q owner Kingfisher are the only public UK retailers to have raked in £1billion in profits in a single year.

Next shares rose 0.7 per cent.