Hammerson has appointed Rita-Rose Gagné as chief executive officer and executive director.

Gagné, who was most recently president of growth markets at Ivanhoé Cambridge, replaces David Atkins at the retail-focused real estate investment trust (REIT).

The UK-listed REIT said Atkins, whose departure was announced in May this year will continue to serve as CEO until Gagné joins takes up her new role before the end of the year.

Gagné joined Ivanhoé Cambridge in 2006 and held a variety of roles from senior vice president, legal affairs and general counsel at Société immobilière Trans-Québec to executive VP of global strategy, portfolio management and investment funds at Ivanhoé Cambridge.

Robert Noel, Hammerson, chair of the board, said, Gagné has an excellent track record in international real estate investment, building high-quality teams, developing strategic partnerships, execution and delivering results.

Gagné, said: “The retail and real estate sectors are going through a period of unprecedented change which makes this a very exciting time to be joining the business.

“I look forward to working with Hammerson’s experienced team and all its stakeholders to both navigate through the challenges but also seek out the opportunities to create value moving forward.”

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