David Woollcott to join Fisher & Paykel

After departure from Winning Appliances.

Former Winning Appliances CEO, David Woollcott, will join Fisher & Paykel next month as managing director for the UK, Ireland and Europe.

“I am delighted to be joining Fisher & Paykel – arguably the most inspiring appliance brand in the world,” Woollcott told Appliance Retailer ahead of his appointment in mid-December.

“Fisher & Paykel is a brand that established itself in the 1930s as innovative and appealing, having real design and engineering prowess and a strong focus on customer’s real wants and needs. The recent presence at IFA in Berlin shows how the product design leads the way and clearly attracts strong attention from consumers and from the industry.

“I am convinced that the new range of built-in and freestanding cooking products will only reinforce this reputation and grow their long list of fans globally. Fisher & Paykel has always been a company that I have looked up to and the opportunity for growth and expansion in the UK, Ireland and Europe is truly exciting. I am very aware of their extraordinary brand presence and popularity in Australia and New Zealand and I look forward to leading the teams in the UK and in Europe in the New Year.

“Having been born in Northamptonshire, just a short distance from the Fisher & Paykel head office in Milton Keynes, I am really excited about returning to the UK after 14 fantastic years in Australia. The unique economic landscape across Europe is full of opportunity for all industries within the EU and further afield.”

Woollcott also reflected on the two and a half years he had with Winning Appliances after joining the retailer from Miele.

“It was useful to experience how a mid-sized family company operates and I have learned a great deal from Winning Appliances. I feel fortunate to have experienced both large corporate organisations and the more fluid, informal structures of smaller business.

“As we all go through our careers, we will ultimately find satisfaction and happiness by aligning ourselves to companies, teams and people that reflect our own values and aspirations. Winning Appliances certainly ticked a number of boxes and I was proud to develop the culture and the team and to witness individuals deliver some stunning projects and great results. Our new website and the new stores in Canberra and Fortitude Valley are such examples.

“I will be watching the Winning Group’s progress with interest and I have no doubt that the fundamentals are very strong indeed. I am yet to experience a retail business with such a laser focus on the in-store and delivery of customer experience above all else.

“I was sorry to leave but I am very excited about my next role which I am sure will bring a number of new unique challenges and opportunities.

“Retailing in the UK is amongst the most sophisticated and competitive globally; I am interested in the resurgence of the specialist retailer as well as learning how to partner effectively with the large scale masters such as John Lewis and AO.

“E-commerce in the UK entered a mature phase some years ago with some replacement appliance categories now transacting at 50% or more of total sales; a similar picture has developed across the EU. The built-in, cooking and premium sub segments continue to require strong physical executions if they are to attract consumers, architects, builders and developers.

“We will miss Australia, without doubt. It has been our home for 14 years; I arrived with BMW as a post graduate and leave with my wife and a young family and some extraordinary experiences. I love the Australian culture, the land and its people, all of which are truly unique. The appliance industry in Australia is like nowhere else. In some respects it is still underdeveloped; in others it sets the standard globally.

“Amazon has a big job on its hands if it is to enter successfully and dominate in our industry locally.

“On a personal level, I would like to thank those who have offered support and friendship over the years.”

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