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Post Office appoints new chief information officer

Former Holland & Barrett IT chief joins the Post Office as interim CIO after former incumbent is promoted

The Post Office has appointed a new chief information officer after its previous IT leader moved on to an operational role.

Former CIO and change director Rob Houghton, who joined the postal service in 2016, has been appointed as chief operating officer. Mark Fabes has been hired to fill the IT leadership position on an interim basis.

Prior to joining the Post Office, Fabes had worked at health food and supplements retailer Holland & Barrett since 2017.

At Holland & Barrett, his work included focusing on driving customer, brand and business insights across the retailer’s stores, website and loyalty scheme.

Prior to that, Fabes spent a couple of years at Starbucks, where he served as technology vice-president, and almost six years at McDonald’s, his last job at the fast food chain being UK IT director.

In his new job, the executive will handle the Post Office’s technology estate, which includes Horizon, an IT system that has run the Post Office branch network for two decades.

Horizon has been at the centre of an ongoing court battle resulting from issues first reported by Computer Weekly in 2009, with subpostmasters claiming faults with the system had generated unexplained losses and completely disrupted their lives.

The Post Office denies claims that faults in the system could have caused the accounting shortfalls.

The court case is currently in its second trial, which has scrutinised the IT system. The multimillion-pound group litigation will resume and conclude in July.

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