Tuesday 18 December 2018 10:05 pm

Patisserie Valerie takes trip to Starbucks to find new commercial director

Follow August Graham
Under-pressure cake shop Patisserie Valerie has rebuilt its management team by snapping up a former Starbucks executive.

Rhys Iley will try to reinvigorate the chain’s 200 stores as he takes up the role as commercial director.

The appointment marks the end of new chief executive Steve Francis’s hiring spree after he brought in interim finance chief Nick Perrin two weeks ago.

At Starbucks, Iley rose from running its UK coffee shops to overseeing France, the Netherlands, Austria and Switzerland, the Grocer, which first reported the story, said.

“We are now ready to accelerate the initiatives already underway to reinvigorate our stores. As Rhys is a coffee enthusiast you can expect us to put more flair and energy into our coffee offering as a priority [amongst many other ideas],” chief executive Francis told the paper.

The Financial Reporting Council has said it plans to investigate the chain’s auditor Grant Thornton over a £40m black hole in the company's accounts.