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Join private and public sector leaders to shape a region-wide response to the economic challenges and opportunities facing the Midlands

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at TMES 2023

KEYNOTE SPEAKERS

Sir John Peace

Sir John Peace

Sir John Peace

Sir John Peace is Chairman of the Midlands Engine Partnership and Midlands Connect. Sir John is also the Lord-Lieutenant of Nottinghamshire and the Chancellor of Nottingham Trent University.

Sir John has had a long and distinguished business career covering the technology, financial services and retail sectors. He has been Chairman, Chief Executive and Founder of Experian plc, Chief Executive of GUS plc, Chairman of Standard Chartered plc, Chairman of Burberry plc, and is currently Chairman of Octo Telematics.

Andy Street

Andy Street

Andy Street

Andy Street was elected as Mayor of the West Midlands in 2017. He grew up in Birmingham.

Andy started his career at John Lewis, where he was a graduate trainee. He became Managing Director of John Lewis in 2007 and stayed with the company until 2016.

Andy has worked with local and national government in economic development roles. He was chair of the Greater Birmingham & Solihull Local Enterprise Partnership between 2011 and 2016. He has also been lead non-executive director for the Department for Communities and Local Government as well as a member of the Prime Minister's Business Advisory Group.

In 2015, Andy was awarded a CBE for services to the economy. He also received the President's Award from the Greater Birmingham Chambers of Commerce for his work in the region.

Andy studied politics, philosophy and economics at Oxford University. He also holds honorary degrees from Birmingham City University, Aston University and the University of Birmingham. Outside work, he is passionate about the arts, and was previously vice chairman of Performances Birmingham Limited, which runs the city's Symphony and Town Halls.

Saul Resnick

Saul Resnick

Saul Resnick

CEO, UK and Ireland, DHL Supply Chain

Since January 2022 Saul has been CEO of the DHL Supply Chain business in the UK & Ireland, providing leadership to over 45,000 colleagues. In 2005, he moved to Australia and joined Exel, which was later acquired by DHL, and held roles including GM and VP of Healthcare. In 2014 he was appointed CEO of DHL Supply Chain Australia and New Zealand, leading over 4,000 colleagues through the pandemic as they continued to deliver high levels of service to an ever-growing customer base.

Mike Owens

Mike Owens

Mike Owens

Mike has worked in the packaging manufacturing industry for over 30 years and has held roles at Senior European Leadership Team level as well as in Plant Management, Operations and Finance. He has developed effective teams delivering results within the corporate, private equity owned and family run business sectors. He is passionate about people development, innovative technologies, continuous process improvement and the synergies between sustainability and paper-based packaging. Mike holds an MA (Hons) Degree in Economics from Edinburgh University. He also sits on the Greater Birmingham Chambers of Commerce Council.

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Jessica Bowles

Jessica Bowles

Director of Strategic Partnerships and Impact, Bruntwood

Jessica joined Bruntwood in 2016 helping to support the company’s ambitions for long term growth. As a member of the Group Board her focus is particularly on the businesses external relationships with city partners and Bruntwood’s ESG and social value agenda. Previously Jessica spent 15 years in Whitehall before moving to Manchester City Council as head of City Policy supporting work on devolution, the Northern Powerhouse and the ‘Our Manchester partnership Strategy. Amongst other external roles Jessica is a member of the Northern Powerhouse Partnership ExCo, NWBLT, GM’s Cycling and Walking Board and is a Trustee for a start-up orchestra Manchester Baroque.

Carl Arntzen

Carl Arntzen

Carl Arntzen

Having studied Mechanical Engineering at University, Carl originally joined Worcester Bosch in 1984 as a Product Development Engineer. Having worked in Product Development for several years, he then moved in to more commercial orientated roles, first in Product Management and then Marketing Management.

Following national and international roles throughout the Sales, Marketing and Service organisation, Carl was appointed Managing Director in October 2011 and CEO in 2015 for the whole Bosch Thermotechnology operations in the UK and Ireland. This includes the residential business operating under Worcester Bosch and the Commercial Industrial business operating under the Bosch brand.

Carl is a Board Member of the Construction Product Association (CPA), the Energy and Utilities Alliance (EUA) and Chairman of the Greater Birmingham & Solihull Institute of Technology.

Maria Machancoses

Maria Machancoses

Maria Machancoses

Maria Machancoses is the chief executive of Midlands Connect - the sub-national transport body (stb) for the midlands. Representing a region of more than 10 million people, midlands connect brings together 22 local transport authorities, civic and business leaders to strategically shape the regions transport network.

Maria has been instrumental in the success and development of Midlands Connect, having helped establish it in 2014. Under her leadership, Midlands Connect has published the first landmark 25-year transport strategy for the region and is now progressing with multi-million infrastructure programmes including the 1.5bn flagship project - Midlands Rail Hub.

As part of her role, she also leads the policy and research activities on crucial agendas such as alternative fuels, freight and rural mobility. This work has led to the delivery of supercharging the midlands - the first roadmap to the acceleration of ev and hydrogen infrastructure across the midlands.

Maria was rewarded outstanding contribution to transport by the Transport Times in 2019. With over than 25-years of experience, she has a track-record of brokering innovative multi-disciplinary partnerships to expand co-ordination and joint-working cross regions and has vast experience in participating in international platforms including EMTA (European Metropolitan Transport Association) and UITP (International Association of Public Transport).

Maria holds a degree in law from the University of Valencia (Spain), as well as a Masters degree in International Transport (University of Cardiff, Wales).

Dr. Roger Mendonça

Dr. Roger Mendonça

Dr. Roger Mendonça

Roger Mendonça is the Chief Executive of the Midlands Engine. He has over twenty five years’ experience working in economic development at national, regional and local level. Previous roles include Chief Operating Officer at the West Midlands Growth Company, where he oversaw the Business & Tourism Programme for the Commonwealth Games, interim CEO at the Greater Birmingham and Solihull Local Enterprise Partnership, and the West Northamptonshire Development Corporation. Roger also has experience of working within central Government, where he piloted legislation through Parliament and ran capital programmes for regional development, physical regeneration, and the redevelopment of the Thames Gateway. He was also lead adviser to the Deputy Prime Minister on economic development potential of the London 2012 Olympic Games bid during the candidate city process.

Carmen Watson

Carmen Watson

Carmen Watson

Carmen Watson has established herself as one of the UK’s most successful recruitment leaders. During her time with Pertemps she has navigated through challenging business climates, implemented a strategy which has helped drive growth and position Pertemps as a market leader in its field; servicing a broad cross section of industry verticals and public sector bodies.

Through promoting and delivering best practice in the field of attraction, recruitment and retention of a diverse range of talent, Carmen has ensured Diversity and Inclusion is at the fore.

In 2015 she was named by the Staffing Industry Analysts as one of the most powerful female leaders in recruitment; an accolade bestowed upon her in the successive 5 years which followed. In 2018 she was voted Overall Midlands Director of the Year (IOD) and received a Lifetime Achievers Award from the Recruitment & Employment Confederation in the same year. Carmen sits on the Business in Community Race Equality Leadership board, is a Fellow of the Institute of Recruitment and Employment Confederation and currently leads the Women in Business Group of the Lord Mayor of Birmingham’s Charity Patrons.

Rosa Wells

Rosa Wells

Rosa Wells

Executive Dean School of Engineering, Digital and Sustainable Construction

Rosa Wells is the Executive Dean of the School of Engineering, Digital and Sustainable Construction at University College Birmingham. Rosa is a highly experienced engineer who has dedicated her career to education and training. She is passionate about providing students with the skills and knowledge they need to succeed in STEM sectors. 

In her previous role, Rosa was leading the Greater Birmingham & Solihull Institute of Technology, working closely with engineering employers and education partners to establish a state-of-the-art learning factory in the city centre accessible to all engineering learners across the region. She now sits on the Board of Directors of the GBS IoT and has, more recently, been appointed Vice Chair of the Institutes of Technology National Network.

Rosa works closely with leading sector bodies such as Women into Science and Engineering, STEM Learning and the Royal Academy of Engineering to ensure best practice is embedded within how the University works with learners, schools, and employers. This expertise and focus have been pivotal in the development of curriculum and provision across the University, who are leading in co-creation of courses with students and employers to ensure graduates meet skills needs of our region now and in the future.

Rosa champions the power of education in the skills agenda and levelling up our region for wider societal benefit.

Richard O'Boyle

Richard O’Boyle

Richard O’Boyle

Richard is a founding Director and CEO of Pioneer Group who brings over 20 years' investment track record, having transacted in excess of £2 billion in UK real estate. Prior to starting Pioneer Group Richard previously co-founded Trinity Investment Management which manages c. £1.5bn of assets across its investment strategies. Previously he worked at Invista REIM, Stockland plus 7 years at Prudential. As well as chairing the investment committee Richard's primary responsibilities is expansion of Pioneer Group across its Venture Building and Infrastructure verticals.

Ninder Johal

Ninder Johal

Ninder Johal

Ninder runs a music, event production and publishing company where he hosts 5 large corporate events a year for entrepreneurs namely in Birmingham, Wolverhampton , Leicester and London with Manchester and Mumbai in 2023. They are known as the Signature Awards, the Nachural Entrepreneurship Awards, Nachural Summer Business Awards and the Midlands Economic Summit.

He has been running a record label for over 25 years and is a member of the premier bhangra band – achanak – who still tour today. The production company has now ventured in creative services including film and video production. The record label remains as the only British Asian label to have charted globally. The track Munde To Bachke charted at no.5 in the UK charts, with a feature by Jay Z, the track charted at no.7 in the US, a No.2 in Germany and a further nine number 1 chart positions. Culminating in sales exceeding 11 million copies.

Nachural have recently set up a publishing arm with the launch of ‘The Business Influencer magazine’ and podcast with international distribution already in place which includes over 1000 stores in the USA, Canada and in the UK – is available at WHSmith.

Outside of his day job – Ninder is the Board member of The West Midlands 5G, Board Governor of the University of Wolverhampton, Elected member of the West Midlands CBI, NED at  Accord Housing and BCRS, Trustee of The Canal and River Trust, Trustee of Victoria Academy ( set of primary schools ), previously President of the Black Country Chamber of Commerce, Board member of the Black Country LEP, Board member of the West Midlands Combined Authority and Chair of Charity – Steps to Work. He is also a Board member of the West Midlands India Partnership, West Midlands Tourism Board and Chair of the Wolverhampton City Investment Board.

He was a runner up in the Sunday Times in 2017 for the Non Executive of the Year awards  for his work as President of the Black Country Chamber of Commerce and is now  a judge for the Sunday Times/Peel Hunt Non Executive Director of the Year..

He was appointed Deputy Lieutenant of the West Midlands in Feb 2019 in recognition of his work for the region and is a multi award winner.

Olly Bartum

Olly Bartrum

Olly Bartrum

Olly is a senior economist in the Institute for Government's public finances team. His current projects focus on the effectiveness of economic policymaking, the role of the Treasury, and energy policy & regulation. 

Before joining the Institute in 2022, Olly was an economist in the civil service. Most recently he led research projects on economic growth, productivity and investment for the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, having previously worked on forecasting and macroeconomic strategy at HM Treasury. He studied Political Economy and Behavioural and Experimental Economics.

Jackie Wild

Jackie Wild

Jackie Wild

Jackie Wild is a forward-thinking leader with strong attention to detail. She worked as a main Board Director of a £1.5bn food group, before founding leading design and construction group, TSL Ltd. in 2002.

Throughout her career, Jackie has developed excellent working relationships within the food industry. It became increasingly evident to her that our global food systems require radical change and, as a result of this, she founded SmartParc to change food production for good.

SmartParc presents a fresh opportunity for forward-thinking food businesses to grow in a more sustainable and collaborative way through easy access to shared services, including a bespoke green energy solution.

Nurturing talent within the food industry is a core part of Jackie's mission, with a dedicated Innovation Centre at the first Park – SmartParc SEGRO Derby. This will provide dedicated training opportunities and links to local universities, as well as connecting local schools with food production. The major brownfield regeneration at SmartParc in Derby will provide 5000 jobs in a new sector for the city.

Geoff Robins

Geoff Robins

Geoff Robins

Geoff was educated at Liverpool University where he attained a 1st Class Honours degree and a Ph.D in Physics. Geoff is now a highly experienced senior business leader with a proven track record in leading, managing and advising complex organisations and portfolios across a wide range of highly regulated and technology related industrial sectors. Roles have included:

Managing Director of Advantage Business Group, created following a Management Buy-out from the Fluor Corporation Main Board Director for Atkins plc for the Defence, Aerospace and Communications portfolio.
Transformation Director for the Defence, Equipment & Support (DE&S) organisation. DE&S employs over 11,000 staff and has an annual budget of £14Bn Transformation Director for UKRI which is responsible for £7.5Bn of research and innovation funding in the UK, employing over 7,000 staff

Geoff, is now a Non Exec Director and strategic advisor to a range of clients. He is currently the Non Exec Chairman of Digital Concepts Engineering (DCE) who are based in Hinkley, Leicestershire. DCE are one of the foremost innovators in the design and production of remote, semi-autonomous or fully autonomous ground vehicles.

Pat McFadden

Pat McFadden

Pat McFadden

The Rt Hon Pat McFadden is the Labour MP for Wolverhampton South East, and has been an MP continuously since 5 May 2005. He currently undertakes the role of Shadow Chief Secretary to the Treasury.

Professor Paul S. Monks

Prof. Paul S. Monks

Prof. Paul S. Monks

Professor Paul Monks is the Chief Scientific Adviser (CSA) for the Department for Energy Security and Net Zero (DESNZ). As CSA, he delivers independent and impartial scientific advice to Ministers and policy makers across the DESNZ portfolio. Paul also works closely with the Government Chief Scientific Adviser, other Departmental CSAs, and the department’s Chief Economist, to strengthen the links within and across departments, encouraging effective engagement and knowledge sharing, and to support delivery of a robust evidence base to underpin DESNZ policy decisions. Prior to joining the department, Paul was Pro-Vice Chancellor and Head of College of Science and Engineering at the University of Leicester, where he remains a Professor in Atmospheric Chemistry and Earth Observation Science.

Professor Nishan Canagarajah

Prof. Nishan Canagarajah

Prof. Nishan Canagarajah

As President and Vice-Chancellor, Professor Nishan Canagarajah is responsible for developing and enhancing the University of Leicester’s world-class reputation in research and teaching to make a positive change in the world. He leads all University activities, chairs the Executive Board, and sets the direction for overall business and academic strategies. 

The University of Leicester is a leading research-intensive University in the UK. It delivers world-changing research and research-inspired education across its comprehensive academic portfolio, including Medicine, Engineering, Social, Physical and Life Sciences, Arts, and Humanities. The University is located in Leicester, one of the most diverse cities in Europe, and the first ‘plural city’ in the UK where no ethnic group has a majority.

At a national level, Professor Canagarajah is a member of the Universities UK Board. Universities UK is the collective voice of 140 universities across the UK and its Board is its main decision-making body. He holds a number of other national positions, including as a member of the Universities and Colleges Employers Association (UCEA) Board and Trustee of IntoUniversity, a leading widening participation charity.

Professor Canagarajah was born and educated in Sri Lanka, before moving to the UK where he received his BA (Hons) and PhD degrees from the University of Cambridge in 1989 and 1993. He joined the University of Bristol as a research assistant in 1993 and worked in a number of academic roles, serving as the Faculty of Engineering Research Director, Head of Department of Computer Science, Head of Merchant Venturers School of Engineering and Dean of the Faculty of Engineering. 

Professor Canagarajah is internationally recognised for his research on signal processing and texture classification. He served on national and international research funding, governance and postgraduate education panels, as well as acting as a technical consultant for Sony, BT, BBC, Orange, Thales, Toshiba and the Met Police.

Chris Hobson

Chris Hobson

Chris Hobson

Chris is Director of Policy and Insight at East Midlands Chamber, leading the policy and data teams, with responsibility for all work areas relating to the development of Chamber policy and lobbying activity.

Among his various positions on regional bodies, he Chairs the Midlands Engine Business Forum and sits on the Midlands Engine Observatory Programme Board, Midlands Connect Steering Group and Midlands Engine Partnership Board

He has a background working in policy in both the private and public sectors, at local, regional and national levels with a range of stakeholders and building effective partnerships.

Paul Faulkner

Paul Faulkner

Paul Faulkner

Paul Faulkner is chief of staff and operations for the Richardson family business - a leader in growth capital and real estate investment with a business portfolio that is embedded across the world.

Prior to taking up this role in early 2021, Paul was chief executive of the Greater Birmingham Chambers of Commerce, having previously been CEO of both Nottingham Forest and Aston Villa.

A history graduate from Cambridge University, Paul began his career at MBNA Bank, completing the Bank's Graduate Management Scheme and working in a variety of roles across the organisation in both the UK and the US.

Paul is also Chairman of Sport Birmingham and a board member of the City of Birmingham Rockets Basketball Club. He has previously served as a Trustee of Birmingham Womens and Children's Hospital Charity,  Cure Leukaemia and Performance Birmingham Limited (PBL) which operates the Town Hall and Symphony Hall in the city.

Paul Thandi

Paul Thandi

Paul Thandi

Paul Thandi is the CEO of the NEC Group, the UK’s leading live events business, which has over forty-seven years of world-class expertise in venue and destination management.

The Group operates the National Exhibition Centre (NEC), Resorts World Arena, the Vox Conference Venue (Vox), International Convention Centre (ICC) and Utilita Arena Birmingham in the heart of the UK. It also manages a range of support services - a national ticketing agency, The Ticket Factory; hospitality brand, Amplify; award-winning caterer, Amadeus; and consultancy and venue management arm, NEC Group Venue Partnerships.

Paul sits on the Boards of Metrobank PLC, West Midlands Growth Company, Inspired Minds and the British Allied Trade Federation. He is also the Chair of the Solihull Skills and Employment Board, plus a patron of Marie Curie, Best Beginnings and Heads Together charities. Paul mentors a handful of CEOs and business leaders and is an advisor to the sports industry on the Diversity and Inclusion Agenda.

He was recognised for his dedication to the development of business and his contribution to the national economy by the Queen in the 2020 New Year’s Honours List, with the awarding of a CBE. This goes alongside his duties as a representative of the Queen in the region, under his role as a Deputy Lieutenant.

Rachael Glaving

Rachael Glaving

Rachael Glaving

Rachael is the Commercial Director for Generation.  She has responsibility for strategy, business development, wholesale market interface and supply chain across the Generation business. 

Rachael joined EDF in the UK in 2000 and has supported the networks, customers and generation business units as well as working as an expatriate for five years in the EDF Group head quarters in Paris.  She is a chartered electrical engineer and holds a masters degree in business administration from Columbia University and the London Business School.

Rachael's roles have focused on business development, strategy and commercial topics across the thermal and nuclear fleet.  In her current role, Rachael is responsible for delivering net zero development opportunities in new technologies such as advanced modular reactors, energy storage and hydrogen production.

Rachael is also a company director of Cyclife UK, EDF's nuclear decommissioning business.

Anne Davies

Anne Davies

Anne Davies

Anne Davies is the face of BBC East Midlands Today, presenting the regional evening news on a nightly basis. She is an experienced journalist and presentation coach both within and outside the BBC. Anne launched the ITV breakfast programme GMTV alongside Eamonn Holmes in 1993 and spent eight years there presenting the news as well asthe Newshour, the main programme, and Lorraine. She was a main presenter on Central News as well as the Travel Channel, has presented an environmental series on Central ITV, consumer affairs for Anglia, ITV daytime DIY and health and beauty shows, as well as producing and presenting a number of ITV fashion specials. She has worked on Panorama and Question Time and in local radio.

In 2016 Anne founded Fashanne, Fashion Designers of the Future Awards championing the design talent in our universities and promoting diversity on the catwalk. It is an annual event involving hundreds of third year university design students that goes from strength to strength.

Anne has recently become a Deputy Lieutenant for Leicestershire and has also been awarded an Honorary Doctor of Letters from De Montfort University.

She is patron of several charities – LOROS hospice, Forever Stars and Rainbows Children and Young Peoples Hospice and always presents BBC Children In Need for the BBC in the East Midlands.

Professor Martin Freer

Prof. Martin Freer

Prof. Martin Freer

Professor Martin Freer a nuclear physicist, and Director of the Birmingham Energy Institute (BEI) at the University of Birmingham. He is also Director of the Energy Research Accelerator (ERA), which comprises eight internationally-renowned Midlands universities which are part of the Midlands Innovation partnership, together with the British Geological Survey.

Martin is former Director of the Birmingham Centre for Nuclear Education and Research, which he established in 2010. He has overseen the development of the BEI, helped establish Energy Capital and has co-led the establishment of the joint University of Birmingham–Fraunhofer Germany research platform. He led the development of the Birmingham Energy Innovation Hub and the co-development of Tyseley Energy Park in Birmingham.

In 2015 he co-led the BEI Commission “Doing Cold Smarter” chaired by Lord Teverson, and in 2012 he led the Policy Commission “Future of Nuclear Energy in the UK” chaired by Lord Hunt, he co-led the Policy Commission with Sir David King which saw the creation of Energy Innovation Zone in the West Midlands and in 2020 published a report on The Road to Low-Carbon Heat with the CBI chaired by Lord Billimoria. Most recently, he led the policy commission “Pathways for Local Heat delivery” chaired by Sir John Armitt. He has championed the establishment of a National Centre for the Decarbonisation of Heat. His main research area is the study of the structure of light nuclei, using nuclear reactions. He received the Friedrich Wilhelm Bessel Prize, Humboldt Foundation, in 2004 and the Rutherford Medal in 2010.

Lord Ravensdale

Lord Ravensdale

Lord Ravensdale

Originally from Nottingham, Lord Ravensdale Is a crossbench peer. He took his seat in 2019 as the youngest member of the House of Lords. Outside of Parliament, Lord Ravensdale is a project director and chartered engineer working for a leading engineering consultancy firm. He leads a business unit in the energy sector and has a strong technical background in nuclear reactor systems design and systems engineering. Within Parliament, he has a strong focus on the energy sector and was a member of the committee that scrutinised the Energy Bill in the House of Lords. He is a member of the board of the Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology, a director of Peers for the Planet and the co-chair of Legislators for Nuclear.

As Co-Chair of the Midlands Engine APPG, Lord Ravensdale is a strong advocate for the Midlands and the levelling up agenda and has led on a number of successful amendments to legislation to assist disadvantaged areas.

Professor David Greenwood

Prof. David Greenwood

Prof. David Greenwood

Prof. David Greenwood is Director for Industrial Engagement, and CEO of the High Value Manufacturing Catapult at WMG. Previously, David established and led the Energy Directorate at WMG where he led a team of over 200 researchers and engineers. Projects spanned several fields, including cars, trucks, boats, off highway machinery, aircraft and motorcycles. His research spans batteries, electric motors, power electronics, and the integration and control of these for propulsion and energy applications.

David moved into academia after 20 years in industry latterly as Head of Hybrid and Electric Systems for engineering consultancy Ricardo UK Ltd.

Professor Greenwood holds advisory and board positions for the Advanced Propulsion Centre, Innovate UK (Faraday Challenge and IDP), and the Faraday Institution. He is head of the Advanced Propulsion Centre's Electrical Energy Storage Spoke.

Professor Warren Manning

Prof. Warren Manning

Prof. Warren Manning

Warren is the Provost for Innovation and Research. He leads upon the University's wide-ranging industrial and business partnerships. This work involves supporting partners, from SMEs to multi-national companies, through engaged research including Knowledge Transfer Partnerships, contract research and European funded programmes.

Warren's passion for Research as the creation of knowledge and expertise, ensures that knowledge created at the University of Derby informs their curriculum and supports industry, policy makers, international partners and the wider research community. His own research delves into advanced vehicle control systems with this expertise applied to various automotive companies including Rover Group, TRW Automotive and Red Bull Racing.

Tom Newman-Taylor

Tom Newman-Taylor

Tom Newman-Taylor

Tom is an experienced senior leader in Government having latterly held positions in the Department for Levelling Up, Communities and Housing (DLUHC) and Department for Transport. He has a strong track record in delivering major commercial and strategic projects across the transport, energy and housing sectors, within and outside Government. As a Deputy Director in the Maritime Directorate he established and ran the cross-Government Critical Freight Taskforce, preventing a catastrophic failure of international and domestic freight networks during Covid-19. This included implementing a multi-million subsidy regime for the international freight sector.

He has developed strategies for Government across housing and transport, including a long-term environmental and innovation strategy for the maritime sector. Earlier in his career he also helped secure the multi-billion pound investments into new Hitachi intercity train fleet and their new base in the UK.

He spent a period in industry as Commercial Projects Lead with Associated British Ports where he was responsible for establishing ABP's port master planning programme, delivering long-term commercial and regeneration plans for sites across the country.

Josh Dunn

Josh Dunn

Josh Dunn

Josh is a Director within EY's Government and Infrastructure business, part of EY's UK&I Consulting Practice. Josh has spent the past 10 years leading sustainable transformation across local government, with a background in place based services and property transformation. Josh has worked with over 40 Council's and Government Departments in the UK and has partnered with a number of organisations, including the ADEPT and CIPFA. Josh has delivered CIPFA and RICS accredited CPD for over 100 local government delegates. Josh has guest lectured at Cardiff University as part of the MSc Advanced Building Performance Evaluation & Sustainable real estate.

He specialises in Sustainability and the Built Environment, including Estate Transformation, Property, Corporate Landlord, Facilities Management, Sustainability Strategy, Carbon Baselining and Climate Action Planning. Josh has a BSc in Management and Strategy from Aston Business School.

His current focus is Sustainability across Local Government, covering Social and Economic/Financial sustainability, as well as Environmental.

Dr. Helen Turner, Director, Midlands Innovation, at the Transforming tomorrow together UKRI Strategy event in iCenture, Birmingham,

Dr. Helen Turner

Dr. Helen Turner

Dr. Helen Turner has spent majority of her career developing and managing collaborations within a university setting both between universities and between universities and industry. Helen moved to the Midlands in 2008 to manage the Midlands Energy Consortium, whilst there, Helen played a critical role in the successful proposal for the £60m Innovate UK funded Energy Research Accelerator. The Energy Research Accelerator secured £120m in co-investment and created 23 new research assets in the Midlands.

In 2015 Helen took up the role of Director of Midlands Innovation; a partnership of the eight Midlands research intensive universities. In 2020, Helen became the Co-Vice Chair of the Midlands Engine Partnerships Board. In recent months Helen has contributed to the work to establish the new patient capital investment company, Midlands Mindforge, which was announced in April 2023.

Edward Glossop

Edward Glossop

Edward Glossop

Edward is a director at EY with over a decade of experience in macroeconomic forecasting, scenario analysis, quantitative modelling and econometrics. Edward has led projects for some of the largest FTSE 100 clients across industries including tourism and consumer products, and has also led key audit assist projects, benchmarking and stress testing the balance sheets of many of the world's largest banks. Prior to joining EY, Edward was a senior macroeconomic strategist at abrdn, supporting the asset allocation process of £550bn AUM across bonds, equities, and private markets. Prior to that, Edward held a senior role at Capital Economics, advising hedge funds, asset managers and private equity houses on the macroeconomic outlook and investment strategy. Edward is a recognised expert in macroeconomics with a strong public profile, regularly appearing in the media including Financial Times, BBC, Guardian, Wall Street Journal and Reuters.

Stuart Thomas

Stuart Thomas

Stuart Thomas

Stuart Thomas is the Head of the Midlands for the BBC. He is responsible for production of all BBC Local news, audio and digital content across the West Midlands and East Midlands. This includes all online news services from the region, TV news programmes Midlands Today and East Midlands Today along with radio stations: BBC Radio WM, BBC CWR, BBC Radio Derby, BBC Radio Leicester, BBC Radio Stoke, BBC Hereford and Worcester, BBC Radio Lincolnshire, BBC Radio Nottingham and BBC Radio Shropshire. He also serves as site leader at BBC Birmingham at The Mailbox HQ, home to The Archers, BBC Radio One's Newsbeat, BBC Asian Network and teams from 1Xtra, BBC Three, the BBC Academy and the BBC HR department. It was announced in 2022 that the headquarters for BBC in Birmingham will relocate to Digbeth in 2026. Stuart joined the BBC in 2009 from ITV, where he was responsible for their flagship regional news programme, 'London Tonight', as well as being a member of the team which manages 'ITV News' at ITN.

Robert Franks

Robert Franks

Robert Franks

Robert Franks is Managing Director at WM5G and has overseen the programme’s movement from mobilisation to delivery, promoting the advantages of 5G and accelerating update across the region.

Throughout his career Robert has held a number of senior positions at leading international telecoms firms including O2, T-Mobile and Orange. While at O2, Robert was Director of Digital and Managing Director of Commerce. He doubled revenue into the hundreds of millions by launching and scaling new businesses in sectors such as Wi-Fi, Internet of Things, messaging, payments, data analytics, advertising and FinTech. He also led the company’s start-up accelerator.

WM5G’s initial focus has been the deployment of the enabling infrastructure required for 5G as well as undertaking nearly 30 real-world trials in sectors such as health, manufacturing and transport. The organisation is working closely with manufacturers, SMEs, universities and hospitals across the region, developing new digital applications that will help drive economic growth and make a real and positive difference to the people and businesses of the West Midlands.

WM5G aims to utilise its experience and expertise gained to date, working with citizens, businesses and organisations, to support post-pandemic economic recovery while driving the uptake and adoption of next-generation communications networks across the region and beyond.

Paul Edwards

Paul Edwards

Paul Edwards

Paul Edwards is Head of Economic Development and Delivery at the West Midlands Combined Authority. As part of his role, he is responsible for the publicly funded business support ecosystem in the West Midlands – Business Growth West Midlands – along with mobilisation and support for the region's high growth strategy, Plan for Growth. Paul has a 15 year career in regional economic development working across policy, practice and delivery for universities, local enterprise partnerships and central government departments. Most recently, prior to joining WMCA, he ran his own economic development consultancy business.

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Jeegar Kakkad

Jeegar Kakkad

Jeegar Kakkad is the Director of Government Innovation at the Tony Blair Institute. He was previously Chief Economist and Director of Policy at ADS, the national trade association for the UK's aerospace, defence and security sectors. Prior to that he held roles at Jaguar Land Rover, MakeUK, the Social Market Foundation and the Brookings Institution.

Midlands Engine Summit Insight 2023

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TESTIMONIALS

SPONSORED BY THE MIDLANDS ENGINE PARTNERSHIP

THE MIDLANDS ENGINE IS THE INFLUENTIAL PAN-REGIONAL PARTNERSHIP AT THE HEART OF THE UK. THROUGH SHARED INTENT, COLLABORATIVE INVESTMENT AND A STRONG, UNIFIED VOICE, DIRECT TO GOVERNMENT, THE PARTNERSHIP FOCUSES ON ADDING VALUE, TACKLING THE THINGS THAT REALLY MATTER IN OUR REGION TO DRIVE PROSPERITY FOR OUR COMMUNITIES AND BUSINESSES.

The Midlands Engine is proud to sponsor the Midlands Economic Summit Attendees – an exceptional opportunity to hear from leading regional and national figures, including our Partnership Chairman, Sir John Peace.

OUR PARTNERS