People: BCN Group; Stonebridge Homes; UDL; and more

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Leeds-based managed IT services provider, BCN Group, has confirmed the promotion of Rob Davies from Group sales and marketing director to managing director.

Davies joined the business in early 2020 and has since made a significant impact as the organisation continues to grow organically and through acquisitions.

As managing director, he will be responsible for business operations and leading the direction in the next stage of BCN’s journey, reporting directly to BCN Group CEO, Simon Kelf. He will also continue to be responsible for the sales and marketing teams.

In the 18 months since Davies took over responsibility for the company’s sales and marketing function, BCN Group has generated record revenues with turnover increasing 13% to £27m for the 2020/2021 financial year.

Kelf said: “We have seen first-hand how Rob has a proven track record of delivering high quality results and his wealth of knowledge and understanding of the sector and the business will help to lead our next stage of growth.”

Davies added: “I have thoroughly enjoyed my time here at BCN Group so far and I look forward to working alongside our fantastic team to continue to grow and strive to always exceed our customers’ expectations.”

BCN Group has achieved substantial growth during the first half of 2021 both organically and through a series of acquisitions including Cloud2, Xicon Cloud and Polymorph.

This has also allowed the business to strengthen its position in sectors such as healthcare, education, and both local and central government.

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Horsforth-based Stonebridge Homes has appointed Mark Wilson to the role of land director for its northeast region.

He joins with over 25 years’ experience of the residential market, working for both private and public sector organisations.

Wilson is a RICS chartered surveyor and is northeast born and bred, and brings a wealth of experience across the north east and Yorkshire regions.

His previous roles at director level include Avant Homes, Charles Church and Home Group. He has most recently been growing his own consultancy business.

Wilson said: “Stonebridge Homes has established itself as a high specification, quality housebuilder with a well-deserved reputation for delivering desirable, community-focused developments in sought after locations.

“I’m looking forward to being a part of that success and working regionally to realise new schemes and bring them to fruition.

“I have built up a good network of associates and consultants over the years and that offers many opportunities for Stonebridge Homes.

“I’m pleased to have been appointed to lead the growth in this region in what I am sure are exciting times ahead.”

Steve Errington, MD, Stonebridge Homes, added: “I’m delighted to welcome Mark to the team as he brings substantial skills and experience to Stonebridge Homes as we broaden our horizons.

“This significant appointment marks our ongoing commitment, investment, and strong track record of delivering quality developments, as we sustainably grow our business.

“Over the last ten years we have successfully delivered over 25 developments in Yorkshire and it’s a great time to
join our company as we commence our next chapter.”

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Dr Clare Collins

Intellectual property (IP) law specialist UDL has further enhanced its software team with the appointment of patent attorney Dr Clare Collins and patent assistant Arthur Roberts.

The new hires will work with Leeds-based UDL’s clients including Amazon, CyberCube, nChain, Sony Interactive Entertainment, NTT and ZTE and help meet growing demand for the firm’s services.

Collins brings experience of drafting and prosecuting patent applications for electronic/medical devices, computer-implemented inventions, mathematics and gaming.

With a PhD in engineering from University of Cambridge she brings a broad spectrum of experience to UDL’s software team.

Roberts joins UDL as a New Zealand-qualified patent attorney, specialising in blockchain, cybersecurity, gaming and immersive technologies.

Having worked in-house at a technology transfer business and in private practice in NZ, he has a strong understanding of the nuances of technology development from a business perspective, especially for start-ups.

Karen Fraser, partner and head of UDL’s software team, said: “Clare and Arthur are already bringing a wealth of expertise to our dynamic team of software patent experts.

“Producing work of exceptional quality and impressing clients with their drafting skills, they’re adding real value to our growing team.

“Both have dived straight into their work on cutting-edge technologies within the blockchain, gaming and cybersecurity spaces with ease.”

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Kinrise, the developer of 34 Boar Lane in Leeds, has appointed Ed Vickers as innovation and ventures associate.

34 Boar Lane has been transformed into a creative office, leisure and retail space, after a £6.5m regeneration and refurbishment programme.

Vickers will be focusing on creating and nurturing cultural and community programmes at this location, delivering a positive impact across the city of Leeds for all to enjoy, working alongside Grace Ellerby, community manager at the building.

Before joining Kinrise, Vickers worked at Multiple, a strategic consultancy within the Hanover communications group.

He supported venture-backed companies across Europe in brand, culture and growth.

He is the founder of the social enterprise company Jollie’s, which raises much needed donations for local homeless shelters through a ‘wear a pair, share a pair’ model.

Vickers said: “My role primarily looks to engage and activate our tenants at 34 Boar Lane, helping them connect, grow and conquer through events, food, art, music, learning and community engagement. All to create a people first, seamless, ‘beyond office’ experience.

“The role also involves implementing our social impact strategy, helping connect our tenants to the specific local needs of Leeds through charities, local projects or volunteering opportunities.

“I was excited to join the Kinrise team as their purpose to ‘create space to inspire and enable’ brings together the themes that ran through my background in start-up, social enterprise and culture strategy.

“I was attracted to their bold vision for the role that workspace could play within the renewal of UK cities and the opportunity for positive impact within local communities, culture and commerce.”

Samuel Lawson Johnson, co-founder of Kinrise, said: “This is an important appointment for us. Our aim is to turn iconic but unloved buildings into creative work and community space.

“It means the city’s heritage lives on for the future and real cultural capital remains in the centre rather than being pushed further out of cities.

“To succeed, we need to build a strong community and cultural spirit within our buildings.

“People and organisations thrive as part of a genuine community – the opportunity to build a welcoming space is at the centre of what we do when we buy and restore buildings. Ed will be an integral part of achieving this aim.”

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