Hamleys has appointed former Debenhams and The Body Shop executive David Smith as its new chief executive.

The famous toy store, owned by Indian conglomerate Reliance Retail, is expected to announce the news of the hire this week, Sky News has reported.

Smith was formerly head of struggling department store Debenhams’ international operations and before that he was managing director for The Body Shop’s Asia Pacific arm.

Reliance Retail operates 9,907 stores across 6,400 Indian cities. The group’s retail licence partners include Marks & Spencer, Diesel, Steve Madden and Kenneth Cole.

Reliance bought Hamleys for around £70m from Chinese company C.Banner last summer. C.Banner bought the business for $130m (£99.9m) in 2015.

The Indian retail group has been pursuing acquisitions as part of its ambition to grow its business by 30% annually for the next 10 years.