Whitbread has appointed Alison Brittain as its new chief executive, taking the total number of women chiefs on the FTSE 100 to six.
The owner of Premier Inn hotels and Costa Coffee has picked the Lloyds Banking Group director to replace Andy Harrison who will retire on 16th February.
Chairman Richard Baker described Brittain as "the standout candidate from a very strong field" whose arrival "will ensure Whitbread continues to get even better still".
Brittain, a former executive director for retail distribution at Santander UK, will earn a base salary of £775,000 and will purchase £500,000 worth of shares in the company.
I am absolutely delighted to have been chosen to lead Whitbread. I am impressed by its success and its strong, well loved brands. Its belief in focussing on customers and team members is something that is very close to my heart and I am committed to supporting and developing this even further in the future.
Whitbread has a clear strategy and I am looking forward to leading the company as it grows and delivers for its customers, its people and its shareholders.
At FTSE 100 companies, just under 30 per cent of non-executive directors are women and there are no male-only boards.