THG hires Charles Allen as chair in governance push

Charles Allen

Manchester e-commerce, beauty and nutrition giant THG plc announced that corporate board veteran Charles Allen is joining THG as independent non-executive chair with immediate effect and will have a “clear mandate to refresh THG’s board and further strengthen governance and diversity.”

THG went public at £5 a share in September 2020 and the stock rose to around £8.

However, THG shares have fallen to around 90p following a disastrous presentation to investors last October and concerns over the company’s structure, transparency and governance.

THG’s 2021 revenue rose 37.9% to £2.2 billion.

“Charles’s appointment follows an international search initiated in October 2021 when THG committed to splitting the dual roles of executive chair and chief executive officer held by its founder Matthew Moulding, who will continue as chief executive officer,” said THG.

Charles has a clear mandate to refresh THG’s board and further strengthen governance and diversity.

“In addition to reviewing the independent board, Charles will be working with Matthew in developing the management team, as well as refining the group’s strategy.

Charles is a highly experienced chair with industry expertise across retail, media, technology, gaming, food production and manufacturing.

“He is currently chair of Balfour Beatty plc, the Premium Listed FTSE 250 infrastructure group, and privately-owned Global Media and Entertainment.

“Previous positions include chair of ISS AS, 2 Sisters Food Group and executive chair of EMI Music.

“Charles was chief executive officer of ITV plc from its formation in 2004 until 2007, chief executive officer of Granada Group plc and chief advisor to the British Home Office.”

Moulding said: “I am delighted that we have been able to attract someone of Charles’s calibre and reputation.

“He has extensive boardroom experience across a range of sectors spanning 40 years.

“Charles has chaired large, successful, dynamic companies and has experience working with entrepreneurs.

“Charles’s consumer, retail, digital and media expertise, knowledge and skills will help THG to continue to drive profitable and sustainable growth, deliver for all our stakeholders and to meet the highest standards of corporate governance.

“Furthermore, on a personal note, his appointment will enable me to focus my attention on delivering the group’s plans for growth.”

Allen said: “It is a privilege to be joining THG as the board’s chair with a clear mandate to improve governance and transparency, strengthen the board by improving its independence and diversity, review and develop the strategy and support management as it seeks to further strengthen its talented leadership team.

“This is a fast-paced, extremely exciting business which has grown rapidly and has many opportunities for significant future growth.

“Over several weeks I have had the opportunity to meet the board and senior team, see the operation and understand the finances and business plans.

“The group has announced a number of strategic options for 2022 and beyond, I look forward to working with Matthew and the team to review these and I will update on progress over the next six months as the plans take shape.

“Matthew is now able to focus full-time on the business which, combined with a very strong management team and passionate committed colleagues throughout the business, ensures THG is well placed to deliver for all its stakeholders.”

About the Author

Mark McSherry
Dalriada Media LLC sites are edited by veteran news journalist Mark McSherry, a former staff editor and reporter with Reuters, Bloomberg and major newspapers including the South China Morning Post, London's Sunday Times and The Scotsman. McSherry's journalism has also appeared in The Washington Post, The Guardian, The Independent, The New York Times, London's Evening Standard and Forbes. McSherry is also a professor of journalism and communication arts in universities and colleges in New York City. Scottish-born McSherry has an MBA from the University of Edinburgh and a Certificate in Global Affairs from New York University.