People Moves

WH Smith begins hunt for next chairman

Having sat on the group’s board since 2010, Henry Staunton must step down from the role under terms of City best practice

WH Smith has reportedly launched its search for a new chairman, with headhunters understood to be approaching prospective candidates on behalf of the group, according to Sky News. 

Headhunters at Lygon Group are said to be searching for a successor to Henry Staunton, who has chaired the group since 2013. 

Having sat on the group’s board since 2010, Staunton must step down from the role under terms of City best practice. 

According to Sky, he had previously been asked to stay on as chairman by other board members to help navigate the group through the pandemic.

It added that the latest search process is being led internally by senior independent director Simon Emeny.

It comes as WH Smith recently welcomed a “strong” start to its financial year, assuring investors it is set to return to profit in 2022 as business and travel continues to rebound. 

The group said it is now in a “strong position” to benefit from future growth opportunities, with over 100 new stores won and planned to open in Travel over the next three years, including 58 in North America.

Its North American market witnessed a good recovery in recent months, with a trading profit of £6m as well as “significant” new business wins at major US airports.

Throughout FY21, the group also won all 30 of its technology stores across UK airports, where it will now showcase its US brand, InMotion. 

Back to top button