Pets at Home has snapped up the Royal Mail’s chief data officer Robert Kent to take on the same role, which is a newly created appointment for the retailer.

Kent will join the pets specialist next month and report to chief executive Peter Pritchard, who said this role is representative of his desire to “focus more on digital assets, tap into the vast potential of our data and take action to ensure our vet business reaches its full potential”.

Pritchard said Kent will be tasked with “uniting the huge volume of pet and customer information that sits within our VIP loyalty scheme and veterinary client databases, so we can deliver products and services to customers that are more relevant and convenient” in his new role.

He will also become a member of the group executive management team.

Kent joins Pets at Home after 10 years at the Royal Mail, eight of which were spent as its chief data officer. Prior to the Royal Mail, Kent held roles as firms including Carphone Warehouse, where he culminated as head of IT, and Capgemini.

Kent said: “Pets at Home is a specialist retailer that has been very successful in the UK pet market. Now is the time for the business to take the next step towards becoming a world-class pet care provider, which will need a more integrated, fast-moving approach to meet pet owners’ needs.”

Kent’s appointment coincides with the departure of Pets at Home subsidiary Vet Group’s chief executive Andrei Balti stepping down after seven years with the group.

Pritchard will take over Balti’s responsibilities in the firm on an interim basis while a replacement is sought.