Pizza Express and ASK owner Gondola Holdings has lined up the finance director of Debenhams as a non-executive director, according to a report in The Times.
Chris Woodhouse will reportedly join the board on 5 January when private equity group Cinven takes control after its £900m buyout.
In another move to shake up the Gondola board, head of the Pizza Express division Harvey Smyth will be promoted to group chief executive.
The company has flitted between private and public ownership in recent years and the latest move private was announced less than a year after it floated on the Stock Exchange in November 2005.
By Tom Bill