David Hillier will step down as CEO in April but will remain on the board as a non-executive director.

David Hillier has taken the decision to scale back his commitments to allow him to spend more time with his family. He said: “It has been an enormous pleasure to lead IVC Evidensia and I am proud of what we have achieved. I have given this decision a great deal of thought and have discussed this at length with our Board, our investors and the senior management team. This felt like the right time to make the change. We are currently experiencing record-breaking levels of organic growth across the group and financial performance is ahead of budget. There is a clear strategy in place, with key priorities and projects already mapped out, led by a strong and experienced team. I am delighted that Stephen Clarke will take the group forward, and I look forward to supporting the group in my capacity as non-executive director.”

Stephen Clarke, former CEO of WHSmith, will be appointed Chief Executive of IVC Evidensia, Europe’s leading veterinary care provider. David Hillier will step down as CEO in April but will remain on the board as a non-executive director and investor.

Kate Swann, Chair of IVC Evidensia comments “David has been an inspirational leader and I know that everyone across the group is grateful for the way he and Stuart Caton have guided the business from a platform of 20 practices to become Europe’s largest veterinary group with almost 1,400 practices spanning 11 countries. His personable and inclusive style has enabled the group to develop rapidly whilst maintaining its entrepreneurial roots, and most importantly keeping clinical excellence at the heart of everything we do. We are thrilled that David will move to a non-executive role on the board.

“I am quite simply delighted that the group has managed to secure someone as talented, well respected and sought after as Stephen Clarke to succeed David. Stephen brings a huge breadth of experience across many sectors and geographies - Stephen and David have already established an excellent working relationship. As a passionate pet owner with four Boston Terriers, I know Stephen holds the IVC Evidensia values close to his heart and I look forward to working with him and the team during the next exciting phase of IVC Evidensia’s growth”

Stephen Clarke said: “The business is a very exciting one that is performing really well, I really like the team and believe that my experience combined with theirs will enable us to build on the tremendous success the Group has already seen. I am a passionate pet owner and I strongly believe in the IVC Evidensia values and their commitment to clinical excellence.”

Stephen Clarke joins the business in late April.

For more information please call Nick Clark at Four Communications on +44 (0)7775 914978.