Kenny Alexander is to step down as CEO of GVC Holdings after 13 years with COO Shay Segev taking control of the FTSE-100 operator almost immediately. Alexander will remain at GVC in the short term as a company executive to support the leadership transition.
Confirming the leadership change, Chairman Barry Gibson said: “Kenny has built a remarkable global business, and has achieved more in the past 13 years than most people manage in a lifetime.
“We will miss him, but we also understand his wishes to hand over the reins after such a long and successful stint at the top of the Company. On behalf of the Board, I would like to sincerely thank him for his significant contribution to GVC.”
CEO since 2007, Alexander has transformed GVC from a London AIM-listed firm to a FTSE 100 global betting business, employing over 25,000 staff in 20 offices across five continents.
During his leadership tenure, Alexander led back-to-back multi-billion pound acquisitions of bwin.party Entertainment in 2016 and the firm’s £4 billion takeover of Ladbrokes Coral in 2017 – deals which subsequently changed all dynamics of the global betting industry.
“I have given 13 years to GVC and I now want to give some time to my family. I have enjoyed every minute of helping to grow GVC into the business that it is today, and am proud of all that has been achieved, “ Alexander commented on his departure.
“I have spent the last four months working from home and reflecting on my future plans, and this feels like the right moment. Whilst it is never easy to hand the baton on, it has been very clear for a number of years now that Shay is the right person to succeed me.
“He is an outstanding leader with a clear strategic vision and unrivalled technological expertise. As a shareholder, I know that our Company will be in good hands. He is also a firm advocate for the strongest possible protection for customers, and shares my philosophy that only a responsible company can be a sustainable and successful company.”
Segev, who has been the Group COO since 2016, joined GVC’s executive team as part of the firm’s takeover of bwin.party, and would be charged with leading the FTSE firm’s key directive of developing proprietary technologies and systems for global expansion.
Updating investors, GVC highlighted Segev’s proven track record at leading multi-market mass-market organisation, having been the central figure in delivering the consecutive integrations of both bwin.party and Ladbrokes Coral teams and assets.
Segev commented on his appointment: “I am hugely honoured to have been given this opportunity by the Board to lead GVC into the next phase of its development. Kenny has been a fantastic colleague and leader during the four years I have worked with him.
“Thanks to his stewardship I am succeeding him at a time when the business is in robust financial health with an exceptional team and exciting opportunities ahead of it, especially in the US. Our strategy will continue to be focused on our industry-leading technology, brands, products.”