The financial regulator's strategy director will become its interim chief executive once Andrew Bailey departs for the Bank of England later this year.
Christopher Woolard is currently the executive director of strategy and competition at the Financial Conduct Authority but will take over the top spot in March.
Mr Woolard, who is also an executive member of the regulator's board, joined the Financial Services Authority in 2013 before its transition to the FCA.
He is currently responsible for policy covering innovation and competition and recently promised the regulator was working to simplify its rules for smaller firms in the market.
Speaking in October Mr Woolard admitted the FCA's current archive of principles, its handbook and "hundreds of pages" of binding technical standards onshored as part of its Brexit preparations posed an issue for smaller businesses.
His appointment comes as current chief executive Mr Bailey prepares for his move to the Bank of England, where he will stand as its new governor.
Mr Woolard said : "I’m delighted that I’ve been asked to take on this role.
"We have a huge job to do and I’m looking forward to working with the Board and colleagues across the FCA as we continue to deliver the FCA’s mission."
Charles Randell, the FCA's chairman, said: "I’m looking forward to working with Chris in his interim chief executive role.
"I’m confident that he and executive committee colleagues will continue to deliver our ambitious plans for change in 2020 and beyond, building on the foundations laid by Andrew Bailey."
In December chancellor Sajid Javid backed Mr Bailey as a "stand out candidate" to replace incumbent governor Mark Carney, who was supposed to step down in February before a short extension was agreed to provide a "smooth transition".
HM Treasury will be running an open competition for a permanent FCA chief executive and further details about this will be announced "in due course".
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