People on the Move: Gentronix; Sigma Capital Group; Redrow; Pavis Financial Management; Essar Oil

Matt Tate and Laura Hinton

Cheshire-based contract research organisation Gentronix – the largest independent genetic toxicology CRO in Europe – has appointed a new operations director to accelerate its strategic growth plans.

Laura Hinton, whose previous role was as director of scientific operations at Cyprotex, will join the senior executive team working alongside fellow operations director Nick Billinton to facilitate a ‘scale at pace’ growth strategy for the business in line with burgeoning market demand as well as growth into new markets and service areas.

As a keu predictive toxicology contract research organisation, Gentronix’s work helps develop safe products used by millions of people around the world, including pharmaceuticals, agrochemicals, fragrances, foods and cosmetics.

The business has a specialist focus on genetic toxicology and skin toxicology services and already works with a number of the top 10 global pharmaceutical businesses as well as leading brands in the agrichemical, flavours and personal care industries.

Laura brings a wealth of industry experience to Gentronix, including 13 years at Cyprotex, where she played a pivotal role in the firm’s strategic growth journey.

In addition to her involvement in strategic leadership, Laura was responsible for building effective teams and infrastructure to support ambitious and efficient growth within the firm’s scientific functions as well as co-developing a comprehensive programme of learning and development.

Based at Alderley Park, Gentronix delivers predictive toxicology products and services to global chemical sectors.

Earlier this year the business secured development capital funding from Northern VCTs managed by Mercia and appointed CRO industry leader Alan Morgan as non-executive chairman.

The business recorded 15% revenue growth in 2019 and expects to double staff numbers over the next three years.

It is currently expanding its laboratory facilities at Alderley Park to increase its capacity for genetic and skin toxicology testing while adding a range of new services.

Managing director, Matt Tate, said: “Laura’s appointment supplements our existing leadership team and adds a new, yet vastly experienced voice to this project and the future direction of the business. Her expertise and experience in driving growth and expansion within the sector will be immensely valuable as we accelerate our scale-up plans to meet continued and increasing global demand.”

Laura said: “The expertise and service levels that Gentronix delivers are of the highest quality and as it embarks on its ambitious and exciting growth journey, now is the perfect time to join the business and help it take this next step in its development.

“This role gives me a hands-on opportunity to drive forward the growth of the business across each of its functions and I’m looking forward to using my experience to support the team and help maximise the potential of an already impressive organisation.”


Sigma Capital Group, the private rented sector residential and urban regeneration specialist, has expanded its team with six new starters in London, Manchester and Edinburgh after growing its portfolio significantly along with the announcement of its London joint venture with EQT Real Estate to initially deliver around 3,000 homes with a value in excess of £1bn.

James Carter

In Manchester, James Carter has joined the business from Equity Housing Group as assistant property asset manager and will be working across the ‘Simple Life’ and ‘DifRent’ brands.

He said: “Sigma is at the forefront of the build to rent sector and is truly making a difference in people’s lives by creating sustainable communities throughout the UK and I’m proud to be part of the team.”

Chloe Jury

Ann Robinson joins as contracts administrator, supporting project managers by collating building and construction contacts, documents and paperwork.

Meanwhile Chloe Jury has expanded the marketing team working as a marketing executive responsible for preparing marketing materials for new sites launching across the UK.


Housebuilder Redrow has appointed Ash Turner as trainees area sales manager for its Lancashire division, based at Buckshaw Village, near Chorley.

The 27-year-old, who has worked as a history teacher for the past year, said: “Before becoming a teacher, I was a sales consultant for Redrow and it was a role I thoroughly enjoyed.

“I only left because my degree was in history and the chance to teach my chosen subject came up and I thought I should give it a try. It wasn’t for me, though, and I found that I missed selling homes too much.

Ash Turner

“Part of the reason I was tempted back was for the career progression opportunities you get with Redrow, and after initially returning as a sales consultant, the opportunity to become a trainee area sales manager came up so I went for it.”

In his trainee sales management role, Ash is overseeing seven sales consultants at four different developments in Clitheroe, Preston and Poulton-le-Fylde.

He also liaises with the marketing team to maximise visitors to each location and works with the construction team to ensure all houses are finished to Redrow’s high standards.


Pavis Financial Management has concluded a successful period with the appointment of three new members to its team.

Jacqui Kirkham and Mike O’Neill have joined the firm as trainee financial planners and James Smith has been added to the paraplanning team.

Jacqui Kirkham

Their appointments mark the culmination of a positive period for the firm, despite the challenges presented by the COVID-19 outbreak.

The firm’s client portfolio has expanded and Pavis now advises clients across the UK on investments in excess of £250m.

Quentin McCormick, managing director, said: “The past six months has been an incredibly difficult time for so many of us. In such trying times, we as a business have sought to keep our focus on delivering reassurance and stability to our clients.


Mike O’Neill

“This approach has also helped us to follow our long-term strategy for organic growth by continuing to broaden our range of expertise and responding to the changing needs of our clients.

“It is pleasing to see our progress as a business being recognised among our professional colleagues and we are incredibly grateful to our clients for their continued trust and their positive engagement with our work.

“Despite the personal and professional challenges that we may all face in the coming months, Pavis will remain standing alongside its clients to help them plan their futures in an ever-changing landscape.”


The board of Essar Oil UK has announced the aappointment of Stein Ivar Bye as chief executive.

He will be based at the company’s Stanlow manufacturing complex in Ellesmere Port, Cheshire.

He brings with him more than 28 years’ experience in the oil and energy sector, working internationally across Europe, Africa, the Middle East and Asia.

Stein, who graduated from the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) and has an MBA in Business Strategy and Management from BI Norwegian Business School, previously spent 25 years with ExxonMobil and was latterly chief operating officer at Sweden’s largest fuel company, Preem.

He is an experienced executive leader in multicultural and international environments and has an impressive track record in refinery operations, coupled with broad experience in supply and trading, strategy and planning and business development.

Stein Ivar Bye

Prashant Ruia, non-executive chairman, Essar Oil UK, said: “As an organisation, our sights are firmly set on transforming our UK business, ensuring its growth and long-term sustainability as we transition towards a low carbon energy economy and deliver the energy solutions of the future for Britain.

“Stein will be pivotal in meeting this challenge and fulfilling this ambition.”

Stein Ivar Bye said: “I am honoured to be selected as CEO for Essar Oil UK and excited to be part of Essar’s transformational journey. Society’s demand for efficient and sustainable energy solutions is an inspiring challenge and will require creativity and perseverance.

“With the collective competency and commitment of the Essar organisation, and strong stakeholder engagement, I am confident Essar Oil UK will be a part of the solution for the future.”