Ecosystem

Announcing the new Director of Tech North

1 Jul, 2016

After searching far and wide, I’m extremely happy to announce that Richard Gregory has been appointed as the new Director of Tech North.

About Richard

Richard is perhaps best known for the 12 years he spent building up Latitude Digital Marketing where he served as their COO for 10 years and two years as the MD.

He also co-founded the Search, Analytics & Social Conference (SAScon) that recently held its seventh annual event at Manchester Metropolitan University. This year’s event attracted futurist Robert Scoble to Manchester for his first ever visit to North West England.

Richard was elected to the Manchester Digital Council in 2015 and is Chairman of Liverpool-based tech startup Ruler Analytics.

The road to Tech North for Richard was a long one. He met with more than a dozen people spread out over nine meetings. We really wanted to get this appointment right and I think it’s safe to say Richard has been “vetted”.

In summarising some of the feedback we received during the recruitment process, Richard was the clear choice to lead Tech North owing to his…

  • Operational experience: Richard has led upwards of 120 employees spread out over four locations, which should prepare him well for the geographical challenge of Tech North.
  • Private sector experience: he was part of a senior team that grew a small agency into one of the UK’s largest.
  • Stakeholder management: being a senior agency leader means constantly balancing the needs and wants of multiple stakeholders whose agendas often conflict.
  • Delivery: the bulk of Richard’s experience is as COO, which means he was the one responsible for ensuring his company actually delivered against expectations and contractual obligations.
  • Advisory experience: in addition to being a lead exec, Richard has had numerous Board and non-executive roles.
  • Communications expertise: one of the big strategic challenges for Tech North is helping to build awareness – regionally, nationally and internationally – of the tech strengths and opportunities in the North. Richard’s many years in helping clients get their message out in a crowded marketplace will be a huge asset.
  • Experience in convening and connecting: Tech North has already done much to bring people together and aid in connecting people across the North. Richard has helped build SAScon from the ground up to become a self-financed, self-sustaining annual fixture in the North’s digital calendar.

I could go on but hopefully you’re getting a sense as to why we were so bullish on Richard’s potential as the new lead executive for Tech North.

In his own words Richard told me he was joining because..

“Tech North is an organisation with a vital mission and I look forward to using my private-sector experience to build on the team’s great work.

“With the events of the past week, the need for Tech North to support the Northern tech community has never been greater. I’m looking forward to the challenge.

“I’ll be sharing more about our plans for the future of Tech North at a series of events across the region in mid-July. More details about these will be announced shortly.”

Richard starts officially on Monday 11 July and will report into Gerard Grech, the CEO of Tech City UK.

As for myself, I return to my previous role as Chair of the Tech North Advisory Board where Richard, Gerard and I will continue working with Board Members Hugh Campbell (GP Bullhound), Lee Perkins (Metronet), Mike Bracken (the Co-operative Group) & David Richard (Wandisco) to steer Tech North towards a very bright future.

I hope you will join me in welcoming Richard to Tech North.

For press enquiries, contact Cathy White (cathy@techcityuk.com)

Image credit: Jackie Hole / Don’t Panic

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