Biographies

To view the biographies click on the names of the Directors below.

Dame Helen Alexander, Chairman

Appointed: May 2012
Independent: Yes

Skills and experience: Dame Helen Alexander is Chairman of UBM plc, the Port of London Authority (PLA) and Incisive Media. She is also deputy chairman of esure Group Holdings, a non-executive director of Rolls-Royce Group plc, and senior adviser to Bain Capital. Dame Helen was president of the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) until June 2011. Helen is Chancellor of the University of Southampton and is currently involved with other not-for-profit organisations in media, the arts and education. Dame Helen was Chief Executive of the Economist Group till 2008, having joined the company in 1985 and been managing director of the Economist Intelligence Unit from 1993 to 1997.

Committee Membership: Chairman of the Nomination Committee. Member of the Remuneration Committee.

Tim Cobbold, Chief Executive Officer

Appointed: May 2014

Skills & Experience: Tim was previously Chief Executive at De La Rue, an international business employing 4,000 people in more than 150 countries covering the Africa, Asia, Continental Europe, Latin America, Middle East and the USA.His previous roles included UK engineering group TI Group and Chloride Group plc, where he became Chief Executive in 2008.  Chloride operates in Continental Europe, Asia, US, Middle East and Australia. After graduating form Imperial College with a degree in Mechanical Engineering, Tim qualified as a Chartered Accountant with Price Waterhouse. 

Committee Membership: None

External Appointments: Non-Executive Director of  Drax plc.

Robert Gray, Chief Financial Officer

Appointed: September 2009

Skills and experience: Robert joined UBM’s Board as Chief Financial Officer in September 2009 from Codere S.A. in Spain where he was Chief Financial Officer from February 2004. He has over 30 years’ experience in finance and banking. He began his career at J.P. Morgan and subsequently worked at Deutsche Bank where he served in a number of senior positions, including Managing Director, Latin American Investment Banking. Robert has extensive experience in mergers and acquisitions, capital-raising across a broad range of markets, industries and geographies, building businesses in international markets, notably in Latin America, and in transforming corporate financial functions to support growth and access to capital markets.

Committee membership: None 

External appointments: Advisory Board Member, Codere S.A. (Spain)

Alan Gillespie Non-Executive Director and Senior Independent Director

Appointed: April 2008 
Independent: Yes

Skills and experience: Alan has extensive experience in both the private and the public sector, with a background in investment banking and financial services. He spent ten years at Citibank, followed by 13 years at Goldman Sachs as a partner, with responsibility for corporate finance and mergers and acquisitions in the UK and Ireland. He jointly led the firm’s financial services practice in Europe and in 1996 established Goldman Sachs’ presence in South Africa. Alan has worked in the UK, USA, Europe and South Africa. From 2001 to 2008 he was Chairman of The Ulster Bank Group. He is currently the Senior Independent Director at Old Mutual plc. Within the public sector, Alan is Chairman of the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), and Chairman of the International Finance Facility for Immunization (IFFIm), an intergovernmental organisation established to fund vaccination programs for children in many of the world’s poorest countries. He has been Chief Executive of the Commonwealth Development Corporation and the Chair of The Northern Ireland Industrial Development Board.

Committee membership: Member of the Audit Committee. Member of the Nomination Committee.

External appointments: Chairman of the Economic and Social Research Council (UK). Chairman of the International Finance Facility for Immunization (UK).  Senior Independent Director of Old Mutual plc (UK).

Pradeep Kar, Non-Executive Director

Appointed: August 2006 
Independent: Yes

Skills and experience: Pradeep has extensive experience in Information Technology and internet services, particularly in India. He is the Founder, Chairman and Managing Director of Microland, India’s leading provider of outsourced IT infrastructure management services. A serial entrepreneur, Pradeep Kar founded Planetasia.com (India’s leading internet professional services company), Indya.com (India’s leading portal, acquired by News Corporation) and Net Brahma (a telecom software company). Pradeep’s deep understanding of the Asian market is crucial to the Board’s strategy in Emerging Markets. 

Committee membership: Member of the Remuneration Committee. 

External appointments: Founder, Chairman and Managing Director of Microland Limited (India). Advisory Board Member of Leaders’ Quest (UK). Board Member of Trinity College Dublin’s South Asia Initiative (Ireland). Board Member of Telstra Telecommunications Pvt Limited (India).

Greg Lock, Non-Executive Director

Appointed: February 2010 
Independent: Yes

Skills and experience: Greg has more than 38 years’ experience in the technology, software and computer services industry. In a 30-year career at IBM Greg held a wide range of senior roles including a member of IBM’s Worldwide Management Council and Governor of the IBM Academy of Technology. As Global General Manager, Industrial sector, he had worldwide responsibility for IBM’s business with companies in the Automotive, Aerospace, Electronics, Chemical, Petroleum and other manufacturing industries. During his career at IBM he lived and worked in the United States, France, Germany and the UK. Greg is Chairman of Computacenter plc, the IT services business, and Chairman of Kofax plc, the leading provider of document-driven business process automation solutions. He also spent four years as Chairman of technology company SurfControl Plc.

Committee membership: Member of the Audit Committee. Chairman of the Remuneration Committee.

External appointments: Chairman of Computacenter plc (UK). Chairman of Kofax plc (UK).

John McConnell, Non-Executive Director

Appointed: January 2014
Independent: Yes

Skills and experience:  John is Group Finance Director of Inchcape plc, the leading premium automotive group which operates in 26 developed and emerging markets around the world. An Australian national, he joined Inchcape in 1999 as CFO of their Australian and New Zealand businesses and was subsequently promoted to CEO of that region before being appointed to his current role in October 2009. Prior to joining Inchcape John worked with Reckitt and Colman (now Reckitt Benckiser) for 13 years in a variety of senior financial roles in the UK, Germany and Australia. He will succeed Jonathan Newcomb as Chairman of UBM’s Audit Committee on 1 March 2014.

Committee membership: Member of the Audit Committee. Member of the Nomination Committee.

Mary McDowell, Non-Executive Director

Appointed: August 2014

Independent: Yes

Skills and experience: Mary has experience running both enterprise and consumer divisions in multi-national companies in the technology industry. From 2004 to 2012 she worked at Nokia, the global telecommunications and mobile phone producer, where she held a number of management roles, most recently as Executive Vice President in charge of Nokia’s Mobile Phones unit. Before joining Nokia, Mary served 17 years at HP-Compaq, after joining as a systems engineer in 1986 and subsequently holding a series of roles in product marketing, product management and strategy, and operational management.

Committee membership: Member of the Nomination Committee. Member of the Remuneration Committee.

External appointments: Mary is Independent Director and Chair of the Compensation/HR Committee at Autodesk, a US-based multinational software corporation.

Terry Neill, Non-Executive Director

Appointed: September 2009 
Independent: Yes

Skills and experience: Terry spent over 30 years working at Accenture/ Andersen Worldwide, between 1970 and 2001 and has vast experience of working on large-scale design and delivery projects, and managing change in a global business. Working in London, Dublin and Chicago, he was the worldwide Managing Partner of Andersen/Accenture’s Change Management Practice and a senior partner in Accenture until August 2001, when he was part of the team that successfully developed and executed the strategy for transforming Accenture into a public company. Terry was also Chairman of Andersen Worldwide from 1996 to 2000. Between 2004 and 2010 Terry was a non-executive director of Bank of Ireland Group and a non-executive director of CRH plc.

Committee membership: Member of the Audit Committee. Member of the Nomination Committee.

External appointments: Chairman of the Camerata Ireland Orchestra (Ireland). Governor of the London Business School and Finance Committee Chairman (UK). Member Trinity College Dublin Foundation Board and Chair of Humanities Advisory Board.

Jonathan Newcomb, Non-Executive Director

Appointed: September 2001 
Independent: Yes

Skills and experience: Jonathan has wide ranging experience of the publishing and data industries. He was Chairman and CEO of Simon & Schuster, one of the world’s largest book publishers and providers of educational and training materials, from 1994 until 2002, having been President and Chief Operating Officer from 1991. Prior to joining Simon & Schuster, Jonathan was president of the McGraw-Hill financial information group, where he was responsible for Standard & Poor’s and Data Resources. From 2002 to 2004 he was a principal with Leeds Equity Partners, a New York-based private equity firm that invests primarily in information, education and training businesses, and in 2006 and 2007 he was President and CEO of Cambium Learning, an educational services provider. Jonathan is currently the Chairman of Swets, one of the world’s leading information services company for academic, corporate, government and medical institutions, and managing director of the New York-based investment firm Coady Diemar.

Committee membership: Chairman of the Audit Committee. Member of the Nomination Committee. 

External appointments: Managing Director of Coady Diemar (US). Board member of Journal Communications (US). Chairman of Swets (The Netherlands). Board member of the Columbia Graduate School of Business (US).