Thompson founded Morning Noon & Night in 1991 after leaving the Watson & Philip group, which operated the VG store chain.
He will be remembered in the retail trade as a passionate and vocal presence on important trade issues, including the battle against alcohol smuggling in the late 1990s.
Thompson sold MN&N in 2004 to the Scotmid Group for £30 million and was later chairman of the Scottish Retail Consortium. He was also on the board of the British Retail Consortium and the Scottish Grocers' Federation.
He went on to wider fame as chairman of Dundee United Football Club, earning the rare distinction of having the unequivocal admiration of a club's supporters in such a position.