London-listed gaming operator William Hill has appointed Ulrik Bengtsson as its new chief executive, replacing Philip Bowcock, who steps down on September 30.

Bengtsson has served as chief digital officer at William Hill since April 2018, prior to which he served as president and chief executive of Stockholm-listed gaming operator Betsson.

He assumes the chief executive’s duties on September 30, although Bowcock will remain an employee of the business until the end of the year to assist with the transition.

“I would like to thank Philip for his important contribution to William Hill over the last four years, both as CFO and for three years as CEO,” said Roger Devlin, chair of William Hill.

“During that time, Philip has built a great team, with real depth and a strong culture and overall the business is in good shape. He has led the business through a period of unprecedented change including the challenges of the Triennial Review and has set a clear strategy, driven our expansion in the US and reinvented our approach to safer gambling.”

Devlin added that Bengtsson is the ideal candidate to lead the company’s next phase of growth due to his deep understanding of the digital business and his international experience.

“His appointment will provide continuity, stability and operational digital leadership as we deliver on the strategy we have set,” Devlin concluded.

Commenting on his promotion to chief executive, Bengtsson said: “I am delighted to be taking on the CEO role at such an exciting time for William Hill and look forward to working with the team to deliver our strategy. We have a great opportunity to build William Hill as a digital and international business by driving Online growth in the UK and internationally, growing a scale US business, remodelling Retail and delivering our Nobody Harmed ambition.”

Bowcock’s departure will also see him step down from the board of directors of William Hill, which will be comprised of nine members from September 30 from the current ten members.

“I have thoroughly enjoyed my time at William Hill,” said Bowcock. “It has been an intense period with the industry and business experiencing significant structural and regulatory change. After all the work the team has done I believe the business is now well placed to take advantage of the opportunities presented in the US market as well as continued growth in digital.

“Having recruited and worked with Ulrik for the last year and a half, I am confident he will take advantage of the opportunities ahead and we will see William Hill go from strength to strength.”

Shares in William Hill plc. (LSE:WMH) were trading up 0.47 per cent at 180.85 pence per share in London early Thursday morning.

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