Royal Mail picks former Ocado exec as new CEO

royal mail - simon thompson

The Royal Mail has announced that Simon Thompson, a former senior executive at Ocado, has been appointed as Chief Executive of the UK business with effect from today.

He replaces Stuart Simpson, who has been acting as interim Chief Executive of the UK business since May 2020.

The Royal Mail said Simpson will leave the company at the end of January following a short handover period.

Keith Williams, who has been acting as interim Executive Chair of the Group since May 2020, will revert back to being Non-Executive Chair from the same date.

Royal Mail in transition

“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”, Williams said. 

“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.”

Commenting on his appointment, Thompson said: “Against the backdrop of a challenging year, our colleagues have once again demonstrated the invaluable service they provide for our communities up and down the country. 

Focus on customer

“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.  We now have a unique opportunity to grow our business, and I look forward to working with our colleagues and stakeholders to take this great company forward.”

Stuart Simpson said: “It has been my privilege to lead Royal Mail in the UK in the last eight months, particularly in such trying times. It is a tremendous company with fantastic people. I wish Simon and all my colleagues the very best success for the future.”

Royal Mail’s shares were trading half a percent lower at £3.58 following the announcement on Monday.