A former chief executive of Informa and Emap is to become the new chairman of Communisis.
David Gilbertson will join the group’s board on 1 March as chairman designate and will officially take over from present chairman Peter Hickson at the group’s AGM in May.
Hickson, who is in his seventies, is retiring after nine years in the role, and said he was proud to have served the business. “During this time the company has established itself as a market leader in customer communication. Our growth has seen us enter new service areas, win major long-term outsourcing contracts and create a major presence in international markets. I very much welcome David as my successor and wish him well in the role."
Gilbertson was chief executive of publishing and events group Emap (now part of Ascential) from 2008-2011, and CEO at Informa for a decade from 1998-2008.
He began his career as a journalist and at one time was editor and chief operating officer of the venerable Lloyd’s List. He is also currently chairman of specialist events business The Concerto Group, and is a non-executive director at Incisive Media, among other business interests.
Communisis chief executive Andy Blundell praised Gilbertson’s wide-ranging business experience in marketing services and customer communications, both in the UK and internationally. "We found David after a formal search process. He was the best candidate in terms of his industry knowledge and ability to help us in our next stage of growth. I'm looking forward to working with him."
Gilbertson's LinkedIn profile describes one of his key skills as "giving small businesses big growth ambition and reminding big businesses that to compete with them they will need to match their speed, quality and focus."
In a Stock Exchange statement announcing the appointment he said: “I look forward to being part of this next exciting chapter of [the Communisis] growth story and to helping it drive stakeholder value through its further success."
Communisis recorded its sixth consecutive year of growth last year, with sales at the group topping £350m.