Gala Coral has confirmed appointment of new C.F.O.

UK online and land gambling group Gala Coral has confirmed the October 8th appointment of Gary Hughes as its Chief Financial Officer reporting to CEO Dominic Harrison. The group's former CFO, Matthew Roberts, indicated to the board in April 2008 that he wished to move on, triggering an intensive search for the right man for the position (see previous InfoPowa report).

Hughes (49) was formerly a non-executive director of J. Sainsbury plc and will join the board at Gala Coral. He was appointed a non-executive director of Sainsbury on 1 January 2005, and was Chief Executive of CMP Information - a division of United Business Media plc. Prior to that, Hughes was Group Finance Director of Emap plc, Group Finance Director of SMG plc, Deputy Finance Director of Forte plc, and prior to this held a number of senior management positions with Guinness plc in the UK and in North America.

His appointment is one of several recent top management moves in the group. On October 1st Harrison (then the COO) was promoted to CEO, replacing Neil Goulden who moved out of the position after five years to become executive deputy chairman pending the departure within the next year of current chairman and founder John Kelly, when he will take Kelly's place.

"I am delighted that Gary will be joining our senior management team," said Goulden. "Gary has extensive experience in high profile blue chip companies in both the Leisure and Media sector and will make a significant contribution to the future growth and development of the company."

Hughes said: is looking forward to putting his stamp on the company. "The [Gala Coral] group has achieved considerable success over the last few years and I am very excited about the growth plans for the coming years both in the UK and internationally."

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