Hong Kong – International health and beauty retailer AS Watson Group has announced the promotion of Malina Ngai to group chief executive officer, helping the business in its growth journey globally. 

Ngai currently serves as the group chief operating officer for AS Watson and the chief executive officer for AS Watson Asia and Europe. 

As the new group CEO, Ngai will be responsible for setting goals, guiding the team in creating plans to prioritise customers, and ensuring the ongoing expansion of AS Watson’s global portfolio.

She brings with her an expansive track record, having joined AS Watson’s parent company, CK Hutchison, formerly known as Hutchison Whampoa, in 2000. Ngai was first stationed at Hutchison Port Holdings and soon moved to the Hutchison Whampoa Corporate Affairs Department. 

After a year at the parent company, Ngai transferred to AS Watson in 2001, where she took on various leadership roles. She became the group COO in 2013 and CEO of AS Watson Asia and Europe in 2019. 

Prior to joining CK Hutchison, Ngai also worked for a sports marketing consultancy and the Hong Kong SAR Government’s statutory body for sports development. She holds a doctoral degree and a master’s degree in business administration, a master’s degree in finance, and a bachelor’s degree in sports administration. 

It is also worth noting that she used to be a competitive athlete and even won a bronze medal for Hong Kong at the 1994 Asian Games. 

Ngai’s appointment to her new role will be effective May 1, 2024. Meanwhile, Dominic Lai, group co-managing director at CK Hutchison and group managing director at AS Watson, will assume the position of chairman for AS Watson

Speaking on her promotion, Lai said, “After a very fulfilling 17 years of leading the AS Watson Group, I think it is the appropriate time to pass on the baton. Malina has been crucial in successfully driving AS Watson’s digital transformation, implementing the O+O (offline plus online) business model, and fostering positive cultural change in the past decade.” 

He added, “Malina has worked at CK Hutchison and AS Watson for 24 years. Her career path started in corporate communications and later expanded to international management positions in international buying, technology development, sales operations, marketing, big data, and sustainability. She demonstrated strong adaptability, strategic agility, and the ability to drive tremendous momentum across the entire organisation. Her significant achievements have continued to propel our organisation forward. Malina is perfectly prepared for this role.” 

“As the Group CEO of AS Watson, Malina will be fully in charge of defining our vision and leading the team to formulate strategies to meet our strategic objectives of putting customers first and continuing the growth journey of our global portfolio. All senior leaders who currently report to me will report to Malina. I will assume the position of Chairman of AS Watson,” Lai concluded.