Vincens, who will take up his position in September, joins from Hachette Filipacchi Media US where he has spent the past five years. Most recently, he was the senior vice-president and group editorial director.
In the UK, Vincens will report directly to Hachette Filipacchi's UK chairman, Kevin Hand. As well as working alongside its nine title editors on the UK's existing magazine brands, he will be responsible for directing the editorial content of launches.
Vincens joined Hachette in 1981. He has served as the director of international editions of Hachette Filipacchi Medias since 1985 and oversaw the launches of British Elle in 1985 and Red in 1997.
Hand said: "The arrival of Francois underlines Hachette's commitment to editorial excellence and our ambition to grow."
Vincens said: "I am delighted to be joining Kevin and his team at such an exciting time for the company. I share his vision and hugely look forward to helping him and his talented editors execute it."