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John Williamson to oversee UK Tote Group’s international growth

The UK Tote Group has confirmed the appointment of John Williamson, a director with extensive experience in Asia, as its Non-Executive Chairman from 1 September 2020.

Williamson’s appointment is expected to bring “significant international business and financial expertise to the organisation”, and provide timely support for its ambitious growth plans just 10 months after its acquisition of the Tote, the UK’s leading pool betting operator.

Alex Frost, Chief Executive of the UK Tote Group, said: “We are delighted to be welcoming someone of John’s calibre and expertise as the new Chairman of the UK Tote Group. John’s broad international experience in global finance and business, his track record in guiding international brands and operations, notably more than a decade on the board of Asia’s leading stock exchange, HKEX, and his expertise in working in multi-stakeholder complex organisations will be invaluable to us and to British racing. 

“His extensive experience in Asia, in particular, will support our ambitious programme to expand our partnerships with other global pool betting organisations around the world, a cornerstone of our growth strategy for the Tote. We are thrilled that John is joining us, and we very much look forward to working with him.”  

Williamson added: “I am a keen racegoer and have long admired the outstanding work of the Hong Kong Jockey Club, running two world-class racecourses, and operating the world’s largest sports wagering business. My dual enthusiasm for racing and business, alongside being able to provide an international perspective will, I hope, be of considerable value to the UK Tote Group team and to British horseracing, and I am very much looking forward to working with the team as they drive forward their growth ambitions.”   

A Chartered Accountant, Williamson joined the Board of Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Limited (HKEX) in 2008 as an Independent Non-Executive Director. He is Chairman of the Board Risk Committee and a member of the Board Executive, Audit, Corporate Social Responsibility, Remuneration and Statutory Risk Management Committees.

He is a well respected banking and finance industry executive who has served as a Non-Executive Director of the Hong Kong Securities Institute and has been a member of a number of other financial services industry committees.

Since 2018, Williamson has been the Chairman and Managing Partner of Generations Limited, which provides bespoke consulting and management services for Family Offices, Entrepreneurs and Executives. Previously, he was Senior Managing Director of Search Investment Group (SIG), the private investment company of Robert W. Miller and his family. 

He joined SIG in 2007 from Morgan Stanley, where he was MD and Head of Infrastructure and Operational Risk for Asia. Prior to joining Morgan Stanley in 1998, Williamson held senior roles with NatWest Securities and stockbrokers, Wood Mackenzie & Company.

Born in Edinburgh, Williamson worked in London for several years before moving to Hong Kong in 1994. A keen racegoer and horse rider, he has been a member of the Hong Kong Jockey Club for 20 years.

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