OPAP appoints Jan Karas as acting CEO

By Iqbal Johal

OPAP has announced chief commercial officer (CCO) Jan Karas will become the company's acting CEO, replacing the outgoing Damian Cope.

Karas will assume responsibilities from 1 June until a permanent CEO is appointed, with the exception of human resources duties, which will be carried out by deputy CEO, Odysseas Christoforou.

Cope announced his decision to step down as CEO of the Greek operator in April but, from 1 June, he will take up the role as advisor to the board, working with Sazka Group on international development.

Cope became OPAP CEO in June 2016 and previously held the position of managing director of Ladbrokes’ international arm, from 2012 to 2015.

Karas took up his role as CCO in January, but has been with OPAP in various roles, such as chief sales officer, since January 2014.

OPAP executive chairman Kamil Ziegler said: "Personally, and on behalf of OPAP’s Board of Directors, I would like to thank Damian for his significant contribution to OPAP’s progress and results and wish him all the best for the future.

"I am looking forward to working with him (Karas). I am convinced we will achieve our strategic goals and address the challenges arising after the COVID-19 pandemic."

With the Greek Government easing lockdown restrictions, OPAP resumed retail operations on 11 May, which saw the operator’s 3,750 stores begin reopening, albeit with strict social distancing measures in place.

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