Senior shake up for high-growth Hull business

Simon Toplass

As part of its rapid growth, recently formed organisation The 55 Group has made a raft of new hires and undergone a reshuffle of its senior team, which sees staff from across its four brands moving into new positions to oversee various aspects of the organisation.

Lord Bob Kerslake, former head of the civil service, moves from his role as non-executive chairman of national framework provider Pagabo to group strategic advisor for The 55 Group. The group includes the aforementioned Pagabo, along with risk, compliance and contract management software company Sypro, social value specialists Loop, and digital-first training platform Tequ.

Simon Toplass moves into the role of chief commercial officer for The 55 Group, while Dr Stuart Kings, director at Sypro, will also step into a group role as The 55 Group’s collaboration director, which will focus on upholding shared values including togetherness, innovation, creativity and results.

Two new hires join the senior board, including group non-executive chairman Paul Hughes, who previously founded and grew software company ParentMail. Meanwhile, group chief financial officer Mark Smith joins, bringing with him a wealth of experience from MKM Building Supplies.

Simon Toplass said: “The changes we have recently undergone have been to facilitate growth across the group and to allow the individual businesses to thrive simultaneously. As an organisation, we invest in our staff and the senior changes are testament to the hard work these individuals have put in.

“Over the past year recruitment has been particularly strong with most of the hires being placed into new positions that have been created to match the growth of the individual businesses. We hope that these forward thinkers continue to drive our work across key sectors and use their knowledge to grow our various businesses, just as our recently promoted senior team continue to do.”

The 55 Group continues to grow, with 20 members of staff having been hired during the past year in addition to the senior shake-up. These roles span the overall group, as well as dedicated roles within Pagabo, Sypro, Tequ and Loop. Together, the growing team brings together support for its huge ecosystem of suppliers and customers.

Having recently moved into a new shared office on Whitefriargate in Hull city centre, ‘building better together’ – a motto adopted by the organisation – is set to propel the businesses in both theory and in practice.

Dr Stuart Kings, a key proponent in the collaboration ideology shared across the group, said: “Stepping into a new role as collaboration director is a responsibility that I am proud to have been trusted with. We believe that our cross-industry experience and expertise will support the government’s plan to level up the UK economy, but the need to put one’s own house in order – and maintaining it – is an important step than cannot be overlooked.

“We will be monitoring our collective strategy and this process will be improved by the new senior team set up. Whether our services are being used in the construction, rail, waste management or professional services industry, our client focus sees us continue to achieve success together with our digital first approach, but to better serve our clients and add value to communities across the country through enabling social value we must enable innovation through greater collaboration.”

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