William Hill Chief Financial Officer Ruth Prior has confirmed that she will be stepping down as CFO and as a Director of the Company to return to the private equity sector, where she will join Element Materials Technology as its new CFO.
Prior joined William Hill in 2017 as a member of the Board and Group Executive team. She has been lauded for her role in developing and delivering the strategy of the Company and driving several transformation initiatives, as well as having responsibility for Group Assurance and Procurement functions.
Prior said: “I have enjoyed my time at William Hill and believe that the Company is in a strong position to take advantage of many opportunities ahead and deliver improved business and financial performance. I wish the business every success in the future.”
Prior’s departure date will be determined in the coming months, with the Board at William Hill beginning the search for a successor.
William Hill CEO Ulrik Bengtsson commented: “I am very appreciative of Ruth’s support and professionalism since I took on the role as CEO. She has supported the business during what has been a period of unprecedented change for the sector and we would like to thank her for all she has done for William Hill.”
The bookmaker has also revealed that growth in its online division has been attributed to its 2019 full year profits for William Hill exceeding predictions, with the operator stating its profits are ‘ahead of market and management expectations’.
Announced in a trading update for the 52 weeks ended 31 December 2019, the bookmaker revealed that analysts have predicted its full year adjusted profits to be in the range of £143m to £148m, while its US business is expected to break even.
Bengtsson added: “The Group has delivered a strong operating performance, ahead of our expectations and against a challenging regulatory backdrop. We made good progress on a number of fronts, including our Retail business, Online and in the US, enabling us to deliver on our long term strategic ambitions.
“We look forward to building on these efforts in 2020 with a strong focus on customer, team and execution.”
The predicted growth has largely been driven by favourable sporting results in December, supported by a growth in the operator’s online division for the third consecutive quarter.
The statement added: “During the year the Group made good progress towards delivering its long term ambition to become a digitally led and internationally diversified business of scale while continuing to embed a culture of responsible gambling.”