People: Liverpool Chamber; TLT; Vita Group; Napthens; Leonard Curtis; P3 People Management

Alison Lobb

Liverpool Chamber of Commerce has nominated Alison Lobb as its next chair of the board.

The chamber will formalise the appointment at its annual general meeting on November 1, which will be for an initial period of three years. Alison will provide leadership of the board in its oversight of the chamber and the attainment of objectives within its ambitious strategic plan.

Alison has undertaken the role of chair of the chamber’s business policy committee for the past three years and joined the board as a non-executive director in 2021. She is the managing partner at Morecrofts Solicitors and is a highly experienced lawyer and former president of Liverpool Law Society, as well as a founder of the Merseyside Independent Business Awards.

She will commence her position as chair after her formal appointment by chamber member businesses at the November AGM. She will succeed Neil Ashbridge, who has completed his six-year fixed-term tenure.

In the past 18 months, the chamber has undergone significant transformation. The organisation has relocated its head office after 86 years to the Cotton Exchange building and successfully restructured its membership scheme to reflect the city region’s changing economic landscape while also supporting Liverpool City Region’s economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic and re-establishing the organisation as the city’s voice for business.

The chamber has successfully developed a dynamic and powerful network of businesses within its membership, from SMEs to multi-national firms, while several new patrons and strategic partners have joined its portfolio, including BT Local Business, Sutcliffe, Liverpool Hope University and Bruntwood Works.

It currently delivers a range of engagement activities and international trade support for businesses. Through the Quarterly Economic Survey, it provides a comprehensive insight into business sentiment in the region and across the UK. It has 16 full-time employees with turnover of approximately £1.1m, generated through membership subscriptions, export advisory services and publicly-funded business support.

Neil Ashbridge said: “Alison is a highly respected and well known figure in Liverpool’s professional community and her leadership and experience will be a great asset to the chamber’s future work. Alison is committed to improving connectivity, inclusivity and opportunity in business which aligns with the chamber’s aspirations moving forward.”

Alison Lobb said: “Liverpool Chamber is the authentic voice of business in the Liverpool City Region and I am thrilled to have the opportunity to lead this organisation and its membership into a new era of development. I look forward to working with the board of directors and the excellent operational team to drive further improvements on behalf of our members and the wider business community, maximising our operational resources and demonstrating best practice and value to our stakeholders at a time of much economic uncertainty.”

Paul Cherpeau, chief executive of Liverpool Chamber, said: “Alison’s appointment comes at an exciting time for the chamber and I’m sure our members will be looking ahead with great optimism about the future of our organisation.

“On behalf of our members and the wider chamber team, we say goodbye and thank you to Neil Ashbridge, who has led us through a period of unprecedented change and modernisation. He leaves us in a strong position and primed for future success.”

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Law firm TLT has further expanded the strength and depth of services it offers financial services firms with the appointment of Thomas Lillie, financial services disputes and litigation specialist, as managing associate in its ever growing Manchester office.

Thomas, who was formerly head of legal, lender services and partner at Aberdein Considine, has a wealth of experience in complex retail mortgage and financial services litigation, with a particular focus on acting for banks, building societies and other lenders and debt servicers. He joins the Manchester office to support partner, James Chadwick, and legal directors, Roisin Bell, Steve Walpole and Chantal Peters in the day-to-day management and development of the financial services disputes and investigations team.

Thomas Lillie

A trusted name in the sector, Thomas’s expertise includes defending financial institutions when claims or allegations are made against them or their officers and/or directors. His practise also includes advising on dispute resolution strategies, including counselling financial institutions on the use of negotiation, mediation and arbitration to limit exposure to court proceedings in the public domain, which could have significant financial and reputational impacts for firms.

Some of Thomas’s recent work has seen him act for a large retail bank in complex mortgage litigation involving multiple parties and claims of fraud, representing a UK retail bank in defending complex multi-party litigation brought under the Consumer Credit Act 1974, and acting for a UK digital challenger bank in relation to fixed charge receivership concerning a defaulting corporate borrower with complex lending arrangements.

James Chadwick said: “This is an exciting time to be joining the team in Manchester during a significant period of growth. We look forward to working with Thomas to continue delivering outstanding results for our clients.”

Thomas said: “I’m looking forward to working with clients in England and Wales, advising them from both a litigation and compliance perspective. It’s an exciting time to be joining TLT in Manchester after the team was recently awarded law firm of the year at the Manchester Legal Awards. I’m looking forward to working with the firm’s dedicated and talented financial services disputes and investigations team.”

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Vita Group has bolstered its senior leadership team at an important time of continued growth with a significant internal promotion following 17-years of dedicated service to the business.

Russell Hayes has been promoted to director of residential and will lead the business’s residential portfolio which includes Circle Square apartments by Vita Living and will include U+nion, Vita Group’s new co-living brand which is set to deliver 1,600 new homes at St John’s in the heart of Manchester when it opens in 2024.

Hayes was part of the team which successfully launched Vita Living apartments at Circle Square last year, building a successful sales and marketing function to stabilise the building’s occupancy as well shaping the product to ensure it exceeds resident expectations.

The principal face for the group’s residential offering, Hayes will continue to build on his work over the past three years as the business targets future growth of its residential portfolio, adding more developments to the platform across the UK, creating thriving communities.

Russell Hayes

Hayes has been with the business for more than 17-years, starting within Select Property’s sales team and quickly establishing himself as a key team player – achievements include supporting the business’s major institutional investments such as the £600m DWS deal as well helping the business to launch its family of residential brands for both Vita Group and Select Property.

The move will see Hayes solely work for Alderley Edge-based Vita Group, stepping away from Mark Stott’s sister company Select Property.

Mark Stott, chief executive for Vita Group, said: “Russell has been a trusted employee delivering outstanding results since he joined the business, proving himself every step of the way. He will now lead the businesses residential portfolio at an incredibly exciting time for the business with new brands about to launch to market and new cities in the pipeline. We’re sure that Russell will continue to develop and exceed expectations as he helps drive the business forward.”

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North West law firm Napthens has added two new members to its business recovery team, with the appointments of Stuart Beatson as legal director and Dominique Moore as business recovery executive.

Stuart brings more than 13 years of business recovery experience to the firm. He has expertise in contentious and non-contentious advice to insolvency practitioners and asset-based lenders, as well as providing director advice to businesses under stress. He joins Napthens after spending the past eight years, latterly as partner, in the insolvency and business restructuring team at Taylors Solicitors, in Manchester.

Previously working as a corporate legal assistant at Napthens, Dominique has been promoted to business recovery executive and will work in a fee earning role in the team.

From left: Stuart Beatson, Dominique Moore, Grahame Love, Laura Hartley-Williams

Napthens’ business recovery team offers expert advice predominantly to insolvency practitioner clients, which includes advising on insolvency appointments, the sale of distressed businesses, and antecedent transaction litigation.

Stuart and Dominique join partner and team leader Grahame Love and associate solicitor Laura Hartley-Williams, as part of the core business recovery team at Napthens.

The team’s growth is in line with an increasingly active insolvency and business recovery sector.

Grahame Love, business recovery partner at Napthens, said: “We work closely with a variety of insolvency practitioners as well as directly with businesses. We’re aware that both the numbers of businesses in distress and instances of formal insolvency are on the rise and that various stakeholders may benefit from the advice of decisive and experienced advisors. This is why we’re delighted to welcome Stuart and Dominique to the team. Their invaluable input will increase capacity and bolster our offering allowing us to provide greater support to our clients.”

Stuart Beatson, legal director at Napthens, said: “Napthens is a firm on a clear growth trajectory, that has been making waves in the regional market for a number of years. As we enter what is expected to be a difficult 12 to 18 months for the economy, businesses will be in need of our support as they navigate new challenges.

“Alongside Grahame, Laura and Dominique we’ll be focused on delivering specialist advice that makes a tangible impact on the success of our clients.”

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Following on from the formal appointment of Dan Booth as group CEO of Leonard Curtis, a new management structure has been put in place to accelerate and promote focus on growth.

Leonard Curtis is a privately-owned professional services provider of corporate restructuring and insolvency, employing more than 250 people across 21 offices including London, Manchester, Birmingham, Leeds as well as the Channel Islands.

As part of his role, Dan will be instrumental in the delivery of strategic direction for the group – which recently announced its plans to double in size in the next three years – and will be assisted by the experienced Jon Mercer, who steps up from group finance director to chief operating officer.

Reporting to the executive board, the new leadership team will comprise of four regional heads, looking after restructuring and insolvency across four UK territories and two divisional heads looking after finance raising and legal services.

In addition, Dan and the executive board will be working alongside and supported by brand and communications director, Paula Castle and compliance director, Diane Shovelton. Catherine Reynolds will be joining later in the year as HR director in preparation for Nicky Mitchell’s retirement.

Regional heads include Andrew Poxon – head of North & Scotland (Bury, Manchester, Preston, Chester, Liverpool, Glasgow); Sean Williams – head of Yorkshire & North East (Leeds, Gateshead, Barlborough); Conrad Beighton – head of Midlands (Birmingham, Wolverhampton, Worcester); and Alex Cadwallader – head of South & Offshore (London, Hampshire, Dorset, Bristol, Cardiff, Taunton, Kings Langley & Guernsey).

Gary Cain, head of funding, and Paula Smith, head of Leonard Curtis Legal, pick up the divisional responsibilities.

Leonard Curtis executive team

John Bluer will remain head of personal insolvency services at Leonard Curtis and a new group finance director, Paul Birks, joined the group in early September.

Dan Booth said: “We are confident we can significantly scale this business and now we have clarity – by region and division – on how we will achieve it. Our plans for growth and development will be delivered by applying our key principles of confidence, commitment, and consistency.”

Demand for the firm’s services has been increasing rapidly as businesses look for recovery solutions after the pandemic and face challenging economic conditions currently.

COO, Jon Mercer, said: “Growth will undoubtedly come from our current three pillars of expertise, legal services, restructuring and insolvency, and raising finance, but we will also be looking to add on complementary skills, like M&A or tax consulting where the synergies align very well.”

Simon Lord, founding partner at Arete Capital Partners who invested £15m in the business last year in partnership with Svella, welcomed the official news of Dan Booth’s appointment to group CEO: “Dan has outstanding leadership qualities and is absolutely the right person to be fronting this exciting growth plan.”

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An expert in leadership and management training has been appointed by North West based HR services provider, P3 People Management.

Chloë Bisson has joined P3’

s team of HR specialists as learning and development consultant and will be responsible for developing and leading the roll-out of its brand new L&D Leadership and Management Training Programme.

Chloë has joined at a pivotal time in the firm’s growth as it approaches its 18th birthday and having adapted to the challenges of COVID-19 by refocusing its products and services. The business is now preparing to launch its new L&D Training Programme to small to medium-sized businesses across the UK.

At 21-years-old, Chloë qualified as a Chartered Accountant with PWC and, by 24, became director of a global business. Her accountancy background exposed her to a high level of corporate finance where she also developed a love of training and development.

Chloë Bisson

A year later, she experienced overwhelming stress and embarked on her own personal development journey and her love for training and development led her to develop the soft skills needed for successful management and leadership. Using the skills she learnt, coupled with her passion for leadership and development, Chloë started her own highly successful business providing support to female business owners starting out on their journey. She also became a best-selling author.

With the business she founded now being run by her business partners, Chloë has joined P3 People Management as to create and lead its L&D Leadership and Management Training Programme.

P3, based in Altrincham, is a specialist outsourced HR provider which supports businesses to increase their profits by prioritising their people.

Charlotte Dean, founder and managing director, said: “Chloë is a fantastic addition to our team and shares our values and passion to continually look for ways to support others, and to equip them with the tools and knowledge needed to not only reach their own full potential but to empower others to do the same.”

Chloë said: “I am really very excited to join the P3 team and to putting everything I have learnt in to developing this training programme which will make a huge difference to so many people and to the success of their businesses. I think business have learnt a great deal from the pandemic and looking after their people, through good management, motivation and offering them opportunities to grow and develop is priceless, both to the individuals and to the growth and success of any business.”

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