REAL estate consultancy Hollis has created a new board structure as the business focuses on succession planning and doubling its turnover in the next five years to £100 million.
The consultancy, which is one of the top 50 largest employee-owned businesses in the UK, has a team of 500 working out of 22 offices in the UK, Ireland, the Netherlands, Spain and Germany and last year reported a turnover of £54 million.
The new board includes Vikki Aitkenhead as regional MD – Scotland, Ireland and Northern Ireland.
Founded just over 30 years ago, the business advises institutional investors across Europe and the UK, as well as private and corporate real estate investors and occupiers. Hollis’ clients include M&G, GSA, Legal & General Investment Management, SEGRO, The Crown Estate & Schroders.
Having appointed an interim CEO, Digby Flower, in September 2023, new positions have been created for chief operating officer, chief financial officer, chief technology officer, chief people officer, head of commercial and clients and six regional managing directors.
Interim CEO Digby Flower said, “Our people are our business and Hollis is awash with incredible talent and leaders who have helped the business grow considerably whilst still being structured as an SME. My role is to change that mindset and structure so that we can scale the business even further.”
Hollis’ new board is as follows:
Interim chief executive officer: Digby Flower
Chief operating officer: Tom Willcock
Chief financial officer: Ian Thompson
Chief technology officer: Kerry Macleod
Chief people officer: Mel Olrik
Head of commercial and clients: Mark Hampson
Regional managing director – London and South East: Ash Winter
Regional managing director – South West and Wales: Will Pasco
Regional managing director – Midlands: Chris Sullivan
Regional managing director – North: James Audsley
Regional managing director – Scotland, Ireland and Northern Ireland: Vikki Aitkenhead
Regional managing director – Mainland Europe: Jamie O’Brien
In addition to the new board structure, each of the new regional managing directors will be putting in place regional leadership teams from within the business, which will include representatives from the four consultancy areas, supported by its 27 existing service heads.
Founder and chairman John Woodman commented, “For the last few years we have been working on establishing a sustainable succession plan that will not only secure the future of the business, but set it up for significant growth. This started with the move to being an employee-owned business two years ago. The creation of this new board continues this development and brings through the next generation of business leaders.”
This year will also see the first full year of the company’s EOT bonus scheme, with quarterly performance pay-outs earmarked for employees as part of their combined 75% ownership.