Holland & Barrett  UK CEO

Source: Holland & Barrett

Anthony Houghton has been promoted to lead H&B’s new UK & Ireland division

Holland & Barrett has appointed a new UK CEO as part of a wider group restructure as it looks to kick on with its transformation plan.

Under the changes – which came into effect at the start of the month – H&B has consolidated its operations into three distinct divisions, and promoted the leadership from within, The Grocer can reveal. 

Anthony Houghton, who was chief operating officer, has been appointed CEO of a new distinct UK and Ireland division. Alex Dower will now lead H&B International as international CEO, having joined the business as group CCO in August 2021.

The final appointment has seen Tamara Rajah, who formerly led H&B’s business and science division, appointed as CEO wellness solutions and chief transformation officer, to lead a new wellness solutions and transformation division.

HB Tamara Rajah

Source: Holland & Barrett

Tamara Rajah has been promoted to lead one of the new consolidated business divisions

Rajah will have oversight of Holland & Barrett’s digital app HB&Me, as part of her restructured role. 

The new divisions will be supported by central group functions across, HR, finance and tech and “group capability” across product development, customer, marketing and communications, H&B said.

“Holland & Barrett has good momentum and we’re in a growth market and positioned well to deliver our unique purpose of adding quality years to life,” said H&B executive chair Alex Gourlay.

“The new divisions will drive performance through empowerment at a more local level, simplify the group structure and further help us create truly integrated customer experiences with a completely omnichannel mindset.

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“Sharpening our operating model in this way will help us go faster, effectively compete and accelerate growth, ultimately improving our customers’ experiences – the driver of all we do,” Gourlay added. 

Holland & Barrett owner LetterOne is nearly 15 months into a transformation plan following its completion of a deal to buy back £700m of H&B’s debts. It’s seen the retailer invest heavily in its UK stores, both modernising its existing footprint as well as adding new openings and renovating its e-commerce supply chain.

It includes the restarting of a concession deal with Tesco to open H&Bs within supermarkets. It’s also doubling down on store experience through a series of new health-focused initiatives like DNA testing and consulting rooms in stores.

The retailer also wants to become more competitive against traditional grocery shops, and in September relaunched its entire food and drink category, with an explicit focus on own-label products.