Royal Mail appoints former Ocado and HSBC man as new CEO

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Royal Mail PLC (LON:RMG) has made non-executive director Simon Thompson its new chief executive with immediate effect.

Thompson, a former chief product officer at Ocado, head of digital commerce at HSBC and most recently a short-term role managing the UK’s coronavirus test and trace app, will take the reins from chairman Keith Williams, who has been leading the company in an executive role since Rico Back departed last summer.

Williams will now revert back to being non-executive chair, the company said in a statement, also announcing that interim chief financial officer Mick Jeavons will continue in that position on a permanent basis and join the board as an executive director with immediate effect.

Martin Seidenberg, chief executive of the GLS parcels arm, will also join the board at the start of April, while Stuart Simpson, interim CEO of the UK business, will leave the company at the end of the month.

“Royal Mail in the UK is in a period of significant transition and needs to move quickly, put the customer at the heart of everything we do, and adapt our business to better serve changing customer needs,” said Williams.

“Simon has been a Non-Executive Director of the Group since November 2017 and already has significant knowledge of the Group and its operations. He also has a wealth of experience both in digital transformation and customer experience and is ideally placed to lead the opportunity to grow and expand our UK parcels business and to meet our customers’ needs across both letters and parcels.”

Thomson said: “Looking ahead, we need to build on the great trust we have on the doorstep. We need to develop a razor-sharp focus on the customer, making sure our services are delivering exactly what our customers need and want.  And we need to explore new opportunities for growth.”

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