Gala Leisure Ltd appoint industry leader Mr. John Kelly OBE as non-executive Chairman as part of £40 million two-year rebrand to Buzz Bingo


John Kelly OBE will take up his role as non-executive Chairman to the Board, effective from the 4 June 2018. His extensive experience and success in the gaming and betting industry over the past 30 years will be invaluable as Buzz Bingo launches and grows. As the original founder and Chief Executive of the Gala Coral Group, having led the management buy in from Bass Plc in 1997, he was, until April this year, Chairman of Ladbrokes Coral PLC, and led the Board during its merger with the Gala Coral business, and its subsequent agreed takeover by GVC.

Gala Leisure was acquired by Caledonia Investments plc, a self-managed investment trust with net assets of £1.8 billion in December 2015.

The new leadership and development of an online product brings renewed confidence to investment in Bingo, with the company maintaining a long-term commitment to the industry, their customers and employees.

Chris Matthews CEO of Gala Leisure said:

“I am really pleased to announce that John Kelly will be joining the board as Non-Executive Chairman. As we begin our new strategy and look towards online in the future, we are delighted to bring John back to where he started having founded Gala operations. He has all the qualities we were looking for as we move forward -a deep understanding of gaming and bingo and a real passion for our business and its people.”

John Kelly, OBE, Non-Executive Chairman of Gala Leisure said:

“Gala Leisure has always been a fantastic company with great people. It is an honour to take on the role of Non-Executive Chairman of the Board and engage with a business with which I have been closely involved in the past. I believe we have a strong strategic plan and a strong team, led by Chris Matthews, and that he will lead this company to success in the future. I look forward to working alongside Chris, the Board, and its supportive owners Caledonia Investments PLC in this next exciting phase of the company’s history.”