Phil Tenney will join Travis Perkins in early 2021 from supermarket group Asda, where he is chief digital and technology officer.
Before Asda, he worked for Wm Morrison Supermarkets, banking group HBOS and consultant Accenture.
He will sit on the Travis Perkins group leadership team, reporting to chief executive Nick Roberts.
Nick Roberts said: “He joins the business at a crucial time, when the industry is going through accelerated transformational change and we have a unique opportunity to use technology to help shape the next generation of merchanting.
“Phil will help to lead our work in this area and comes with a great track record in driving digital transformation and modernisation programmes. We look forward to having him on our team.”