Which? appoints new chief executive

Anabel Hoult will take over from Peter Vicary-Smith in October, the consumer rights charity says

The consumer rights charity Which? has appointed a former Save the Children director as its next chief executive.

Anabel Hoult will succeed Peter Vicary-Smith, the charity’s long-serving chief executive, who announced earlier this year that he would step down in September to "pursue a portfolio career".

Hoult (right) was chief operating officer at Save the Children UK from December 2010 to July 2015, before joining the electrical and telecommunications retailer Dixons Carphone Warehouse as transformation director.

Before joining Save, Hoult had previously spent more than 10 years as managing director of services at Carphone Warehouse prior to its merger with Dixons Retail.

Since leaving Dixons Carphone Warehouse last year, Hoult has been working on expansion plans for the property company Hoults Yard, which she has chaired since 1999, a Which? spokesman said.

Hoult, who will join Which? on 1 October, is likely to be paid considerably less than Vicary-Smith.

The spokesman said she would receive a base salary of £250,000 a year plus a bonus that would have a target value of 30 per cent of her salary but capped at 50 per cent, meaning she could not receive more than £375,000 per annum.

Vicary-Smith’s salary was £462,000 in the year to the end of June 2017, although this was lower than it had been in previous years after the charity ended a controversial long-term incentive plan that led to six-figure bonuses being paid by its commercial arm to several senior executives.

Hoult said in a statement that she was proud to be joining Which? "to continue developing its role and reach as a consumer champion at this pivotal point in its history".

Tim Gardam, chair of the Consumers’ Association – the charity behind the Which? brand – said: "Anabel has a compelling blend of commercial and charitable experience, and under her stewardship we look forward to making an even greater impact, championing the interests of all consumers in a digital economy."

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