Philip Bowcock named new William Hill chief executive

Philip Bowcock: had been in interim charge since last summer

Philip Bowcock named new William Hill CEO By Peter Scargill 7:18AM 10 MAR 2017

PHILIP BOWCOCK has been named as the new boss of William Hill with immediate effect, ending the search for a new CEO of the bookmaker which has been going on since last summer.

Bowcock, 47, had been in pole position to take the role on permanently having steered the ship on an interim basis since July, during which time performance has improved at the bookmaker.

William Hill had been without a permanent chief executive since last July, when former boss James Henderson left abruptly having failed to push the firm forward, particularly online.

This led to William Hill being preyed upon by rival firms, with an audacious £3 billion joint-bid made by Rank and 888 Holdings in August, althought it was ultimately abandoned.

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The appointment comes with the Cheltenham Festival just around the corner, a key time for bookmakers.

Bowcock: I am proud

Bowcock, who had been the chief financial officer at William Hill before stepping up to chief executive, said on Friday: "I am proud to be chosen to lead William Hill, a business that millions of customers trust and a brand that is synonymous with betting.

"During my time at the helm, I have had the opportunity to lead a passionate, talented and committed team and we have made considerable operational progress in recent months."

He added: "The team and I are excited by the opportunity to keep improving our position in all our key markets whilst delivering a great experience for our customers."

Financial results last month revealed William Hill had made some progress under Bowcock, with net revenue for 2016 up one per cent and an adjusted operating profit of £261.5m, which was in line with the revised guidance.

Gareth Davis, chairman of William Hill, said: "Since his appointment last July, Philip has driven the business forward at real pace and we have seen important progress across our online, retail and international businesses over that time.

"Our recent results show that William Hill is now in a stronger position and Philip has outlined a clear plan to continue that momentum into the future."

News of Bowcock's appointment was greeted with positivity on the stock market, with William Hill shares climbing 7.4p to 269.6p at 7.50am on Friday.

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