Well Pharmacy’s CEO is stepping down after 17 years at the helm of the multiple, it has been announced.

John Nuttall has led the business since 2002 and oversaw its rebrand from the Co-operative Pharmacy to Well after it was bought by the Bestway Group in 2014.

Mr Nuttall announced he would be retiring to spend more time with his family and ‘transition into future non-executive director roles’, Well said today (26 June).

He will be replaced by Signet Jewellers president and chief customer officer Seb Hobbs.

Mr Hobbs has been appointed ‘designate CEO’ to work alongside Mr Nuttall from 22 July and will take over as CEO when Mr Nuttall leaves the business on 30 September, Well said.


‘A familiar and friendly face across the industry’


As well as his ‘pivotal role in transforming Well Pharmacy’, Mr Nuttall has overseen the creation of Bestway Group’s Medhub division and the implementation of a ‘central fill’ hub-and-spoke dispensing model at the chain.

Under Mr Nuttall’s leadership, the multiple also launched its digital pharmacy service in July 2018, which provides free delivery of NHS prescriptions straight to patients’ homes.

A Well spokesperson said: ‘John’s focus on these initiatives leaves Well Pharmacy best placed to succeed in an ever-changing sector.

‘Having worked in pharmacy for over 32 years, he is a very familiar and friendly face across the industry and will be dearly missed.’

Bestway chief Zameer Choudrey thanked Mr Nuttall on behalf of the board ‘for all he has done for the business’.

He added: ‘I would also like to congratulate Seb on his new appointment and wish him every success as he leads our business into the future.’


‘A time of transformation in pharmacy’


Speaking of his appointment, Mr Hobbs said: ‘I am thrilled to be joining the Bestway family. The opportunity to be part of the Well team at a time of transformation in pharmacy is exciting.

‘I look forward to helping Well grow, especially in digital and through new ventures, as well as the core retail business and I’m eager to get started.’

Before joining diamond retailer Signet Jewellers, Mr Hobbs held senior roles at WHSmith, Blacks Leisure and Storehouse, Well said.

In 2014, Bestway Group acquired the Co-operative Pharmacy for £620m and rebranded the chain as Well Pharmacy following a £200m investment programme.