Mark Fox, formerly of Bill’s and Starbucks, has joined Roadchef, the UK’s largest motorway service area operator, as its new chief executive, MCA has learnt.

Fox left Bill’s earlier this year after 18 months as chief executive of the Richard Caring-backed restaurant chain. He was previously UK managing director and vice president of operations at Starbucks, chief executive of Pizza Hut UK’s delivery business and a restaurant director at Compass.

It is thought that with Fox’s appointment, Simon Turl, who has been chief executive of Roadchef since 2007, will step up to become the company’s chairman.

Roadchef currently operates 30 motorway service areas in 21 locations in the UK. It is the third largest motorway service area operator behind Welcome Break and Moto.

All three motorway services operators have invested significant sums on improving their F&B offers over the last few years, with Roadchef recently adding Leon and Pret A Manger to its roster of roadside brands.

The business was acquired by Antin Infrastructure Partners in 2014 and it is thought it could find itself on the market in 18 months’ time.

Bill’s appointed Duncan Garrood as its new chief executive at the end of January – to lead the company “as it enters a new phase of development and expansion across the country”. Garrood stepped down as chief executive of Punch last year after the completion of the takeover by Patron Capital/Heineken.