Executive director, Chess Telecom
Career so far
I am a dealmaker with experience of more than 100 transactions (M&A, IPOs, JVs including cross border) as corporate advisor and within the industry. I am on the board of listed and unlisted companies. At Chess (a telecoms reseller), I have led the growth in turnover from £4m to £45m as a result of my bank-supported acquisition activity.
What was your first job and were you any good at it?
I was a waiter at a yacht club. I was hopeless (I am clumsy) and got sacked (with my three friends) after five complete days’ service.
Who was your top teenage pin-up?
The girl on the tennis poster with her skirt up at the back (who was that girl?). My colleagues won’t know this about me but… my passion is not IT/telecoms; it’s modern British art.
What is your favourite snack?
I thought snacks were out? Anyway, cashew nuts and minimum 50 per cent cocoa chocolate.
What has been your career high point to date?
Growing Chess from £4m to £45m.
Has 2013 been good, bad or ugly?
For me, good. Chess has the formula for success and we are growing consciously and carefully. What do you say when asked at a party what you do for a living? I tell them what my daughter tells people: that I sit around chatting, drinking cups of coffee, going for piggy lunches while my secretaries and PAs do all the work (not true, by the way).
If I wasn’t working in the channel I would probably be…
A dealer in modern British art.
What will be the channel’s biggest challenge in 2014?
Understanding all the technology options and being able to train and keep their customers happy.
Infrastructure provider says international sales now make up 51 per cent of its revenue
Suzanne Chappell of TMS plans sailing venture after selling Oxfordshire-based TMS to acquisitive Chess
Withdrawal of credit insurance by some providers a 'reflection' of current challenge facing IT sector, according to MD Steve Soper
SMART's UK managing director joins Lenovo to boost SMB business