New York-listed gaming supplier International Game Technology (IGT) has appointed Christopher Spears to lead the company's legal team as senior vice president and general counsel.

Spears will oversee all IGT's legal and corporate governance matters, reporting to the supplier's executive vice president and chief financial officer Alberto Fornaro.

Spears joins after 19 years with leading construction and mining equipment manufacturer Caterpillar, where he most recently served as group general counsel for commercial and international operations. Before joining Caterpillar he was an associate attorney in the Corporate and Securities Practice Group for law firm Greenebaum Doll and McDonald.

"As IGT faces significant opportunities in our rapidly evolving industry, Chris Spears' skills and depth of experience with an international Fortune 500 company will foster strong partnerships with IGT's leadership, and ensure that we responsibly meet our growth objectives," Fornaro explained.

Spears will replace Neil Abrams as IGT general counsel, who is retiring but will remain with the company until December 31st as an advisor to ease the transition.

"Neil Abrams has been a valued member of the senior executive team at IGT," Fornaro added. "He played a key role in supporting the company through critical activities during and after the merger completion. We thank him for his service, and wish him well in this new chapter of his life."

Shares in International Game Technology plc (Co. Data) (NYQ:IGT) closed down 0.80 per cent at US$23.57 per share in New York Wednesday.