The Board of Empiric Student Property plc, the owner and operator of premium student accommodation across the UK, has announced the appointment of Duncan Garrood as Chief Executive Officer of the Company.
Duncan is an experienced and proven business leader in PLCs and large privately-owned businesses in the UK and international markets and he has strong operational, sales and marketing skills. Most recently, Duncan was CEO of Ten Entertainment Group PLC (2018-present), the UK’s second largest operator of family entertainment centres and focussed on tenpin bowling. Prior to this, Duncan was CEO of Punch Taverns plc, the UK pub and bar operator, navigating its turnaround and sale, after spending six years with M.H. Alshaya Co., one of the world’s largest licensed retail operators. For five years, he was Commercial Director at BAA Plc, overseeing the growth of World Duty Free, Lynton Property and the commercial development of Heathrow Terminal 5. Early in his career, Duncan spent 19 years with Unilever PLC in various UK and overseas roles, principally in China.
Duncan will join Empiric no later than 1 January 2021. In the interim period, Lynne Fennah will continue to take on additional executive responsibilities and remain supported by a strong senior leadership team and Board, under the direction of Mark Pain, Chairman. Following the announcement of his departure on 18 March 2020, Tim Attlee will step down as CEO of the Company on 30 June 2020.
Mark Pain, Chairman of Empiric Student Property plc, commented:
“I am delighted to announce that we have appointed Duncan as our new CEO. He is a strong and proven business leader with excellent business development and operational capabilities and extensive experience in commercial businesses with significant real estate assets. The Board has conducted a thorough search process to find the best candidate and we are delighted to have appointed Duncan to lead Empiric.
We look forward to working with Duncan to embed and further drive improvements to the financial and operational performance of the Group and lead the business and our people through the next phase of Empiric’s development.”
Duncan Garrood added:
“I am excited to be joining Empiric at this point in its development. The Company has largely been transformed into an integrated operational property business focused on premium student accommodation across the UK. I see a significant opportunity to harness further the strengths of the business and build on its success. I look forward to working with Mark, Lynne and the whole Empiric team to build a stronger business for the Group’s customers, employees, partners and shareholders.”