People: BGF; ARC Building Solutions; AspinallVerdi; and more

BGF has strengthened its Yorkshire team, with the appointment of Christian Pollard as Investor.

He will be based at the Leeds office and will be responsible for supporting the team on deal origination, executing transactions, portfolio management and exits.

He joins from Clearwater, where he worked on a number of award-winning transactions, ranging from £25m to £150m in value across the technology, healthcare and business services sectors.

Pollard is a qualified Chartered Accountant and started his career at KPMG.

Barry Jackson, head of BGF in the North, said: “We have a highly talented team in Yorkshire and the North East and Christian’s appointment adds further strength and depth to our regional proposition.

“Having worked on some standout deals in the region, Christian has built up a strong network within the local business community and has a distinct understanding of what it takes to execute transactions despite the ongoing economic pressures. We’re happy to have him onboard.”

2024 deals led by the Yorkshire team include the £3.35m investment in Boxphish – a Leeds-headquartered human risk management platform; and the multi-million pound investment in Akula Living – a marine-grade commercial outdoor furniture manufacturer to the world’s largest hospitality and cruise operators.

Pollard said: “I’m really excited to be part of the ongoing growth story of the regional team, which has gone from strength-to-strength, supporting some of Yorkshire and the North East’s most dynamic and exciting companies.

“At BGF, there is a fantastic opportunity to work alongside ambitious businesses to help them deliver accelerated growth and realise their potential.”


Leeds-based ARC Building Solutions (ARC), a manufacturer of specialist cavity fire barriers and cavity closers, has announced Chris Sexton will take on the role of national sales manager.

The newly created role will focus on strengthening the firm’s national proposition in merchants and distributors, as well as supporting its technical sales teams across the country.  

With over 18 years’ experience in insulation and fire-related products, Sexton brings a wealth of technical knowledge and expertise to the role.

Having held senior positions at both Rockwool and Knauf Insulation, he understands the sector and the requirements of its stakeholders.

He said: “The industry today demands different things of manufacturers and ARC is at the forefront of this new way of working.

“We understand the challenges customers face every day and we’re committed to developing solutions that make a real difference.

“Safer homes and buildings – that’s the goal. That means innovation, but also engagement at every touchpoint. This is central to our objective.

“There are ambitious plans in place and I’m proud to join such a forward-thinking and innovative business and I’m excited to see what we can achieve together.”

Director of sales and specification, Aaron Sharp, added: “Chris is a widely respected and well-regarded salesperson with a broad experience in the industry. His knowledge and expertise will be invaluable as we grow our product range and customer base.

“Our proposition is about more than just products – it’s about solving challenges, providing expert support and demonstrating added value. I am certain Chris will thrive in the role and bring something new and exciting to ARC.”


Property regeneration consultant, AspinallVerdi, is continuing to expand with two senior appointments.

Associate director Tom Smith and principal consultant Ed Clothier will operate from the firm’s head office at 46 The Calls in Leeds and its office at 1 Mann Island in Liverpool, serving a growing number of clients in the public and private sectors throughout the north of England and further afield.

Smith joins from Stockport Council and Stockport Mayoral Development Corporation (MDC) as a development manager.

He led teams of consultants and contractors to bring forward key regeneration schemes for the council and MDC and successfully achieved full planning permission on key projects.

Before his time at Stockport, he spent eight years with CBRE advising a range of public and private sector clients.

His background in both sectors gives Smith a strong insight into the requirements for clients, with expertise spanning development appraisals, strategic acquisition, strategic land advisory, local authority procurement and funding applications.

Smith has extensive experience in sourcing funding through sources including the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC) and Brownfield Housing Fund.

His qualifications include a BSc in Property Management and Investment from Salford University and is a RICS Chartered Surveyor.

To his advisory work Clothier brings over a decade of experience in feasibility, planning, viability, and pre-construction, having led a specialist regeneration development firm.

He has extensive experience managing the full development lifecycle, from pre-acquisition feasibility and site identification to planning management and stakeholder engagement.

His expertise includes tackling complex redevelopment challenges, he is skilled in analysis, negotiation, and both written and oral representation, providing valuable insights and advice on these issues.

Clothier is proficient in financial modelling, economic impact assessments, strategic land advisory, and development appraisals, with a focus on financial viability and land optimisation.

He holds an LL.M (Distinction) – Master of Laws from the University of York and a BSc (First Class Hons) in Economics and Government from the London School of Economics.

Atam Verdi, executive director of AspinallVerdi, said: “The strategic appointments of Tom and Ed bring further invaluable experience to our growing team of property regeneration professionals across our nationwide network of offices.

“Their insight and talent will benefit their colleagues and public and private sector clients throughout the north of England and further afield.”


B2B creative marketing agency Objective, located in Sheffield city centre, is continuing to expand by attracting an experienced business development manager.

Nick Dixon has 30 years’ experience in business development in the creative marketing and print sector, including more than 15 years operating a successful direct marketing business.

As part of the Objective team, he will be developing valuable new business leads, by introducing companies to the complete range of B2B services.

Managing director, Dan Broadbent, said: “It’s a particularly exciting time for Nick to be joining us, as Objective recently became the first agency to launch a B2B Insights Platform.

“The game-changing Platform, powered by state-of-the-art AI, analyses social media, blogs and news sites to pinpoint content that truly engages key B2B audiences.

“The Platform harnesses AI to uncover marketing content that’s most likely to capture the attention of target audiences.

“We are happy to have Nick on board at this important phase of our business development.

“Nick’s breadth of experience will further strengthen our position, as we work hard to continue to expand our portfolio of B2B clients.

“The launch of the Insights Platform is an extremely exciting development for the Objective team and our B2B clients.

“Our innovative new technologies will support Nick to introduce Objective to even more global B2B businesses.”