Chairman and executive directors

The Group's most senior management combines a wealth of knowledge with experience

John Strachan
Chairman

Appointed to the Board: Appointed as a Non-Executive Director on 7 October 2015 and as Chairman on 3 May 2017.

Career: John was Global Head of Retail Services at Cushman and Wakefield until December 2015. John's career commenced at Healey and Baker in 1972 where he rose to become Head of UK and European Retail from 1996 to 2000. Healey and Baker was acquired by Cushman and Wakefield in 2000.

Skills and Experience: John brings a wealth of experience from the retail property sector, an international perspective including extensive knowledge of the Spanish retail property market. He is known for his creative and entrepreneurial approach to developing new business opportunities. He is a Fellow of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors.

Other appointments: Advisory Board member of Truecap Private Equity; Vice Chairman of the European Board of the International Council of Shopping Centres.

Committees:

  • Chairman of the Capital Projects Committee
  • Chairman of the Nomination & Review Committee
  • Chairman of the Corporate Responsibility Committee

Matthew Roberts
Chief Executive

Appointed to the Board: Appointed to the board on 3 June 2010. Appointed as Chief Executive on 29 April 2019.

Career: Matthew Roberts was Chief Financial Officer of intu from 2010 to 2019. In 2016 he was given additional responsibility for intu Operations where he was responsible for the day-to-day activities of the UK centres. He was previously the Finance Director of Debenhams plc from 1996 to 2003, and Chief Financial Officer of Gala (subsequently Gala Coral Group) from 2004 to 2008. He qualified as a chartered accountant in 1989.

Skills and experience: Matthew has significant real estate and retail experience and a strong track record of successfully recycling capital, with over £1.6 billion of assets having been sold since 2010. He has led on financing/refinancing of £4 billion of secured debt in over 20 transactions since 2013, including on £1.5 billion bond and bank refinancing of 6 centres, £500 million bond refinancing of intu Metrocentre and £600 million revolving credit facility. He led on the acquisition of the Trafford Centre in 2011 for £1.6 billion, with both a share issue and placing to fund the acquisition. He also led in acquiring assets from Westfield in 2014 and in Spain in 2013 and 2015. 

Other appointments:
Non-Executive Director and Chairman of the Audit Committee of Marston's PLC.

Committees:

  • Chairman of the Executive Committee
  • Member of the Capital Projects Committee

Robert Allen
Chief Financial Officer

Appointed to the Board: Appointed to the Board and as Chief Financial Officer on 10 June 2019.

Career: Robert served as Group Chief Financial Officer of Crest Nicholson Plc for two years until 2018, responsible for all aspects of Finance and IT. From 1998 to 2016, he held a number of senior finance roles at British American Tobacco Plc including Regional Finance Controller EEMEA from 2012 to 2016 and Head of Corporate Finance and Group Treasurer from 2009 to 2012. Prior to joining British American Tobacco, Robert held a corporate finance M&A role at Charterhouse Bank from 1996 to 1998. He commenced his career at Coopers & Lybrand (1993-1996).

Skills and Experience: Robert has extensive experience of refinancing, M&A, treasury, IT and investor relations. At Crest Nicholson, Robert led a refinancing with private placement in the US and renewed banking facilities amidst a change of brokers. As Regional Finance Controller, EEMEA of BAT, he was accountable for all aspects of finance across the region, comprising of 83 countries, accounting for £10 billion of sales and £1.5 billion operating profit. As Head of Corporate Finance and Group Treasurer of BAT, Robert led the Group's M&A team, responsible for all acquisitions, disposals and joint ventures globally, as well as holding responsibility for all aspects of global treasury during the 2008/09 financial crisis.

Committees: 

  • Member of the Executive Committee
  • Member of the Capital Projects Committee

In addition to the Chairman, the Board is comprised of the Deputy Chairman, two executive directors and three non-executive directors. More information about the non-executive directors can be found here.