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Carpetright hires Wilf Walsh as chief executive

Carpet and flooring retailer Carpetright has appointed former Coral Group managing director Wilf Walsh as its new chief executive.

GENERAL MERCHANDISE

Carpetright hires Wilf Walsh as chief executive

Walsh’s career includes 20 years of retail and consumer experience including eight years as managing director at Coral and six years at HMV. Most recently, he was chairman of Fortuna Entertainment Group, the betting shop and online sports betting company operating in Central Europe.

When Walsh takes up his position on 21 July, executive chairman Lord Harris of Peckham will become non-executive chairman and will retire from the board at the company’s AGM on 4 September although he will remain available to Walsh in an advisory capacity.

Lord Harris said: "I will be 72 this year and shareholders will be aware that I have been planning a managed hand-over of my responsibilities for some time. I am delighted that Wilf Walsh has agreed to join Carpetright as chief executive. He has strong retail and online credentials and a successful track record in managing multi-site consumer-facing businesses. I am confident that I will be leaving the business in safe hands."

Walsh added: "Carpetright is a great brand and I am looking forward to working with the team to drive profitability and share going forward. Lord Harris has 56 years in the carpet business and will be a hard act to follow but the market-leading position he has built for the business is an excellent place from which to start."

Carpetright is now embarking on a search for a new chairman although deputy chairman Baroness Noakes will become interim chairman if an appointment has not been made by the AGM.

In two further changes to the board, group development director Martin Harris will step down at the AGM to pursue “other business opportunities” while Graham Harris, who was appointed as chief operating officer in October 2013, has left the company due to his role becoming redundant on Walsh's appointment.

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