Shopping centre landlord Intu has promoted chief financial officer, Matthew Roberts, to the role of chief executive, with effect from the end of the month.

Roberts, who has been CFO since 2010, will succeed David Fischel who will be standing down from the board and leaving Intu on 26 April.

Prior to joining Intu, Roberts was CFO of Gala Coral from 2004 to 2008, leading the acquisition of Coral which resulted in the business becoming the UK’s largest private equity owned company at the time. Prior to this, he was finance director of Debenhams, managing the company’s successful IPO in 1998 and sale in 2003, and also held senior roles at Top Shop/Top Man and The Burton Group.

Fischel has been with the group since 1985, and chief executive since 2001

John Strachan, chairman of Intu, said: “David’s substantial contribution to intu’s affairs over many years has been outstanding and he will be greatly missed by the board and all of intu’s staff. I would like to extend my personal gratitude to David for continuing to steer the group for a longer period than was originally intended until we had completed our succession process. David will leave intu with our very best wishes.

“Matthew has been an exceptional CFO at intu. This, combined with his extensive and relevant experience, including his proven expertise in leading strategic transformation projects, means he is absolutely the right person to lead this business going forward.”

A formal process to recruit a new chief financial officer will commence imminently which will include external and internal candidates.