Shop Direct appoints Andy Burton to CTO

Shop Direct has appointed former Sky Betting and Gaming chief technology officer (CTO) Andy Burton to its executive board as the retailer’s new group CTO.

Burton will join Shop Direct from online gambling firm The Stars Group, where he became a director following the company’s merger with Sky Betting and Gaming in 2018. During his nine years at Sky and The Stars Group, he grew the technology team 40-fold to 700 and oversaw IT operations which were instrumental in helping the company become the UK’s largest online gaming operator by number of customers.

During his previous role he developed the company’s in-house development capabilities and supported agile engineering and lean product development. Under his leadership the Sky Betting and Gaming team released new code hundreds of times per week to improve the customer experience.

Burton will join Shop Direct in May 2019, leading a team of 275 technologists, reporting into group CEO, Henry Birch.

Bolstering the technology division even further, Shop Direct has also promoted former head of IT architecture and engineering, Karl Wintrell, to the position of technology director. He will be responsible for data science and strategy, and tech engineering and architecture. Interim CTO, JM Domaingue, will also take up the role of technology director, overseeing technology operations including security. Wintrell and Domaingue will lead technology efforts until Burton’s arrival, when they will both report into the new CTO.

“Technology underpins everything we do at Shop Direct. It helps us deliver the online experience and end-to-end journey that keeps our customers coming back to Very and Littlewoods time and time again. It was always our ambition to appoint a heavy-hitting CTO to our board and Andy certainly fits the bill,” said Shop Direct boss, Henry Birch.

“He has unrivalled experience of improving performance and customer experience through technology and new ways of working. With the support of Karl and JM, who are exceptional leaders, I am confident that Andy will continue to transform our technology capabilities, deliver the platforms we need to support our ongoing growth and be a vital member of our executive board.”

Burton added: “Shop Direct is hugely ambitious and has a track record in delivering successful transformation through tech. The business has achieved so much in a short time but there’s still a lot of work to do. I’m delighted to have the opportunity to be part of the next chapter. The best technology innovation, culture and talent will play a massive part in that.”

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