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Government Departments: Staff

House of Lords written question – answered on 18th July 2013.

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Photo of Lord Adonis Lord Adonis Shadow Spokesperson (Treasury)

To ask Her Majesty’s Government, further to the comment by the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, Vince Cable, in the Financial Times of 10 July that “half of our top management have had high profile careers in business or higher education”, what senior business and higher education experience is possessed by the Permanent Secretary and the seven directors-general of the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills.

Photo of Viscount Younger of Leckie Viscount Younger of Leckie The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills

The Department for Business, Innovation & Skills (BIS) has a proven track record of blending civil service, business and academic experience in its top team.

Before joining BIS in 2009 Director General Finance & Commercial Howard Orme held a number of global and international leadership roles in senior strategy, planning, and analysis with Allied Domecq and Unilever. He is a Fellow Chartered Management Accountant.

Before joining the civil service, Tera Allas, Director General Strategy, Analysis & Better Regulation, worked for 10 years at McKinsey & Company, Inc., co-leading McKinsey’s microeconomics practice and advising major organisations on industry dynamics, business unit strategy, corporate finance and regulatory strategy. Prior to McKinsey, Tera worked at a commercial bank and at the Bank of Finland.

Mark Russell, Chief Executive of the Shareholder Executive, joined BIS in 2004, following a career in corporate finance. He was a partner in the corporate finance departments of KPMG in London and Frankfurt. Mark is also a non-executive director of London and Continental Railways Limited and Eurostar International Limited, and chairs Eurostar’s audit committee.

Sir John O’Reilly, Director General Knowledge & Innovation, was previously Vice Chancellor at Cranfield University and spent five years as Chief Executive of the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council. An engineer by training he has previously held appointments in industry (e.g. with BT plc) and academia (University of Essex, University College of North Wales, and University College London as Chair of Telecommunications). He served as President of the Institution of Electrical Engineers (now the Institution of Engineering and Technology), is a Fellow and former member of Council of the Royal Academy of Engineering and was knighted in 2007 for his contributions to science.

This business and academic experience is complemented by the extensive public sector expertise on the Board. For example, Permanent Secretary Martin Donnelly has worked at senior levels in the Treasury, Cabinet Office, Home Office and FCO as well as on secondment to the European Commission, French Finance Ministry and OFCOM. He has led a range of negotiations in the G8 and EU on business and regulatory issues.

All the experienced career civil servants on the Board have either worked beyond Government or have undertaken secondments with business and all have close links with business and higher and further education stakeholders.

The BIS senior management team are supported by five Non-Executive Board Members: Sir Andrew Witty (CEO, GlaxoSmithKline), Dalton Philips (CEO, WM Morrison Supermarkets PLC), Prof Dame Julia King (Vice Chancellor, Aston University), Dale Murray CBE (Angel Investor and Non-Executive Director, Sussex Place Ventures) and Alan Aubrey (CEO, IP Group PLC).

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