Former William Hill executive Gibson named new GVC chairman
GVC has named former William Hill director Barry Gibson as its new chairman, replacing long-term holder of the office, Lee Feldman.
Gibson, currently chairman of HomeServe, will replace Feldman in February – almost a year after Feldman’s departure was first announced. He becomes a non-executive director of GVC today (4 November).
Gibson has been chairman of HomeServe for almost a decade, during which time the home emergency repairs business has grown to become a market-leading FTSE 250 business.
Gibson was formerly a non-executive director of William Hill and senior independent director of Bwin.party. He has also held senior posts at Somerfield and National Express and was group retailing director at British Airports Authority and group chief executive of retailer Littlewoods.
Gibson said: “I am delighted to be joining GVC at such an exciting point in its growth trajectory.
“I have been involved in a number of companies in the gambling sector over many years, and it is immediately clear to me that GVC has industry-leading technology, products, brands, marketing capabilities and people.
“As such, I see enormous potential for this business and am looking forward very much to helping GVC to be the most successful and responsible operator in the sector.”
Feldman, who has been GVC chairman for 11 years, announced he would be leaving in March 2019. He had been criticised by some shareholders after he sold 900,000 shares, worth £6.0m.
His tenure has seen the group grow significantly through major acquisitions, such as the £4bn (€4.49bn/$5.55bn) deal to buy Ladbrokes Coral in 2018.
Stephen Morana, GVC’s senior independent non-executive director, who led the process to appoint a successor to Feldman, said: “Our criteria for the new chairman included significant gambling sector experience, a demonstrable track-record of success on a range of high-profile public company boards, and a deep understanding of the evolving corporate governance landscape.
“After an extensive search, Barry stood out as exceeding all of those criteria, and we are delighted that someone of his calibre and experience is joining GVC to help us realise our ambitious plans for future growth.
“On behalf of the Board I would also like to thank Lee Feldman for playing such an instrumental role in GVC’s transformation from a small AIM listed business to a major Main Market, premium listed company.”