Phil Sheridan is senior managing director, UK, Middle East and South America, with Robert Half International. Sheridan trained with Ernst & Young before he joined Robert Half in 1996, where he focused on accounting and finance recruitment, progressing to regional director in 2000 and managing director in 2005. His background in finance has been instrumental in developing and executing strategy, helping the business successfully navigate the challenges of recent years.
Farida Gibbs founded Gibbs Hybrid in 2005 as a privately held, globally certified woman-owned and ethnic minority-owned business. The company has achieved a CAGR of 29% year on year and US$100 million in revenue providing talent management services, programme technology solutions and outsourcing. Gibbs supports the “Women of the Future” Ambassadors Programme, sits on the advisory board for Mosaic Princes Trust and is a member of the WBE Council. Gibbs’ other recognitions include: E&Y Entrepreneur of the Year, Brummell 30 Inspirational City of London Women Entrepreneurs and Business Woman of the Year.
James Caan made his fortune through the global, multi-million pound success of his companies Alexander Mann and Humana International. In 2004, he founded private equity firm Hamilton Bradshaw, which has more than 20 recruitment companies in its portfolio. He is best known for being on the hit BBC show Dragons’ Den, and more recently, The Business Class on CNBC. Caan chairs the U.K. government’s Start Up Loans scheme, which provides funding and mentoring to budding entrepreneurs. Caan is also one of the most followed LinkedIn influencers with 2.2 million followers
Under Spencer Wreford’s leadership as CEO, London-based Empresaria Group plc is investing in its central team and rationalizing its business with a focus on its core brands. Wreford joined the international specialist staffing group in 2010 as group finance director and added the COO role in 2017; he was promoted to CEO in May 2018. Wreford has led six investments to bring new brands into the group, including last year’s majority stake in Peru’s Grupo Solimano. Empresaria posted consecutive record profit levels for the last four years, with 2018 reaching record levels of net fee income, profit and conversion ratio.
* Wreford stepped down as CEO in June 2019.
Giles Daubeney is COO of Robert Walters. He joined the group in 1988, after working in recruitment for Accountancy SelectionLimited and Badenock& Clark Ltd. From 1990 to 1994, he was based in Amsterdam and responsible for the Robert Walters Dutch and Belgian operations. Daubeney was appointed to his currentrole in 1999, and was appointed to the board in 2000.
Nigel Heap is managing director of Hays U.K. & Ireland and chairman of Hays Asia Pacific. Heap has been with the company since 1988. In 1997, he was appointed managing director of Hays Australia, plus New Zealand in 1999, Hong Kong and China in 2006, Japan and Singapore in 2007 and Malaysia in 2012. In 2006, Heap was appointed managing director of Asia Pacific and joined the group management board.
Brian Wilkinson is CEO of Matchtech Group Plc, having joined the company in December 2013. Wilkinson has worked in the recruitment industry for more than 35 years and brings extensive international as well as M&A experience to Matchtech. Wilkinson has been an active proponent of raising standards over that time, serving terms as chairman of both the FRES and the REC. In 2015, he was presented with the prestigious Lifetime Achievement award by the REC.
Ged Mason is CEO of Morson, a UK-based technical staffing firm. He joined the company in 1986 and took over as managing director in 1999 from his father, Gerry Mason, with backing from Barclays Private Equity. The company was floated on AIM in 2006 and taken private again in 2012. Morson Group added Vital Human Resources to the fold in 2013. In 2016, Mason received OBE (Officer of the Order of the British Empire) for services to engineering and design in the UK.
After three years at Touche Ross, Robert Walters joined the recruitment firm Michael Page as one of its first employees. Following an eight-year period during which he set up the firm’s New York office, Walters returned to London and established Robert Walters in 1985, specialising in junior- to middle-management professional positions. The company now operates across 28 countries, employs more than 3,800 people and had revenue of £1.2 billion in 2017.
Albert Ellis is CEO of the Harvey Nash Group, which had revenue of nearly £700 million in its most recent fiscal year. Ellis was originally appointed to the board in 2000 as chief financial officer and then CEO in 2005. In 1998 he joined Harvey Nash from Hays plc. Prior to that he worked in the accounting and auditing profession after qualifying as a chartered accountant. He is also on the board of Asia House and is an advisor at London City University’s Cass Business School masters in information leadership course.