We create unforgettable live experiences

Meet the Team

Our leadership team gives strategic direction to the business, living the NEC Group values which drive the business culture, and with a focus on delivering unforgettable live experiences.

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Paul Thandi

Chief Executive

Paul Thandi

Chief Executive

Paul is the Chief Executive Officer of the NEC Group, the UK’s leading live events business, which owns; the NEC, ICC, Vox, Resorts World Arena, Utilita Arena Birmingham, The Ticket Factory and Amadeus.

He was appointed Group CEO in 2006, bringing over 20 years’ experience in the media industry.

Paul has since transformed the Group into a customer-centric and data-led organisation, whilst increasing its portfolio of businesses and venues, and leading the company through changes of ownership in 2015 and 2018.

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Richard Ashton

Chief Financial Officer

Richard Ashton

Chief Financial Officer

Richard joined the NEC Group in September 2019.

His previous experience includes 15 years as Group Finance Director of Home Retail Group Plc and a variety of finance roles, including a divisional Chief Financial Officer position for the American corporation, GE.

Richard qualified as a Chartered Accountant at PwC and remained with the company for six years in an audit role.

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Paul Bate

Operations Director

Amadeus

Paul Bate

Operations Director

Amadeus

Paul has been Operations Director for Amadeus since 2018, following six years as Catering General Manager for the NEC.

During his time at the NEC, he collected the 2017 Catering Manager of the Year at the prestigious Foodservice Cateys.

In his current role, Paul is responsible for catering operations across the NEC Group’s home venues, including the NEC, ICC, Vox, Resorts World Arena and Utilita Arena Birmingham.

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Claire Bond

Group HR Director

Claire Bond

Group HR Director

Claire has been with the NEC Group since 2013, joining initially as Senior HR Business Partner before progressing to Head of Business HR and Learning & Development in 2016 and then Group HR Director in 2018.

She has experience across an array of industries having held HR positions with KPMG, Sainsbury’s, Co-op and Co-op Legal Services.

During her time with the Group, Claire has led an award-winning people development strategy and introduced a range of new talent programmes and reward schemes.

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Andy Cole

Director of Property, Partnerships and Media

Andy Cole

Director of Property, Partnerships and Media

Andy joined the group in 2018 as Revenue Development Director and now focuses on Property, Partnerships and Media across the NEC Group Assets.

He has a leadership background in leisure, retail and hotels being Centre Manager of Touchwood for six years which followed twenty years managing a wide portfolio of hotel properties in the UK.

Andy was awarded an MBE in 2016 for his services to retail and charity and is also Chair of a large Multi-Academy Trust.

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Guy Dunstan

Managing Director

Ticketing and Arenas

Guy Dunstan

Managing Director

Ticketing and Arenas

As Managing Director of Ticketing & Arenas for the NEC Group, Guy’s role sees him leading two of the UK’s leading live entertainment venues, Resorts World Arena and Utilita Arena Birmingham, in addition to Group ticketing arm, The Ticket Factory.

Guy has worked at the NEC Group for over 20 years, starting as an Assistant Event Manager and working his way up to General Manager – a position he held for 11 years before being promoted to Director in November 2018, and then Managing Director in March 2020.

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Paul Errington

Group General Counsel

Paul Errington

Group General Counsel

Paul joined the NEC Group in 2013. His role involves the provision of corporate and commercial legal advice to the NEC Group on topics ranging from commercial contracts, regulatory compliance and corporate governance to managing disputes and litigation, as well as the appointment of external legal advisers and management of NEC Group’s insurance portfolio.

Before joining the NEC Group, Paul spent 4 years as Legal Counsel at Home Retail Group Plc prior to which he trained and qualified into the Corporate team at Birmingham law firm The Wilkes Partnership.

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Ed Grice

Finance Director

Conventions & Exhibitions

Ed Grice

Finance Director

Conventions & Exhibitions

Ed has been with the NEC Group since 2012, joining initially as Commercial Finance Manager for the NEC. He is a chartered accountant with over 15 years post-qualified experience having qualified with PwC in Nottingham.

In his current role, Ed is responsible for the combined commercial finance team across the NEC, ICC and Vox.

Ed works in partnership with the senior management teams, providing leadership in the development of strategy and financial planning to deliver on strategic objectives.

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Richard Howle

Director of Ticketing

Richard Howle

Director of Ticketing

Richard has held the Director of Ticketing position since 2017, having joined the NEC Group from Really Useful Theatres, where he was Commercial Director.

He has a wealth of experience in the live events industry having worked with venues and promoters for nearly two decades.

Alongside his Group role, Richard is also a Director for STAR, the self-regulatory body for the UK ticketing industry.

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James Hunter Jackson

Group IT Director

James Hunter Jackson

Group IT Director

James joined the NEC Group as Group IT Director in 2014 and has led significant change across all areas of the company in IT processes and infrastructure.

Previously, James spent almost 10 years with leading hospitality business, Whitbread Plc, progressing through a number of roles to International Systems Director.

He has also worked for Mitchells & Butlers and Gate Gourmet in senior IT positions.

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Miles Jones

Finance Director

Amadeus & Accounting Services

Miles Jones

Finance Director

Amadeus & Accounting Services

Miles joined the NEC Group in 2004 as Commercial Finance Manager for Group Operations and has since held finance positions across the Group’s businesses.

He is currently Finance Director for Amadeus, responsible for all aspects of financial management of the NEC Group’s catering arm; providing robust financial information to stakeholders, highlighting opportunities and contributing to key decisions with senior management.

In addition, Miles leads the Group team which delivers Banking & Treasury, Accounts Payable and Accounts Receivable solutions.

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Stacey Lintern

Finance Director

Ticketing & Arenas

Stacey Lintern

Finance Director

Ticketing & Arenas

Stacey has been with the NEC Group since 2016. Joining as Commercial Finance Manager, she held this role for five years before a recent promotion to Finance Director for Ticketing & Arenas.

Stacey has vast experience in the financial world having held accountancy, analyst, cost controller and managerial roles across an array of industries.

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Janine Smith

Venue Sales Director

Conventions & Exhibitions

Janine Smith

Venue Sales Director

Conventions & Exhibitions

Having been with the NEC Group for over 25 years, Janine brings great industry experience and invaluable company knowledge to the Operating Board.

She began her Group career at the ICC and spent almost 15 years there before moving over to the NEC.

Following a period as Account Director at the NEC, Janine was promoted to Venue Sales Director in 2020 and is now responsible for the sales functions across the NEC, ICC and Vox.

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Ian Taylor

Managing Director

Conventions & Exhibitions

Ian Taylor

Managing Director

Conventions & Exhibitions

With over 20 years of experience, Ian has a wealth of knowledge in the events industry.

He joined the NEC Group in 2014 as NEC Venue Sales Director and oversaw the commercial transformation of the exhibition business.

By 2020, Ian had become Managing Director for Conventions & Exhibitions. He is now responsible for the management of the NEC, ICC and Vox - the UK’s leading convention and exhibition venues.

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Kevin Watson

Managing Director

Amadeus

Kevin Watson

Managing Director

Amadeus

Kevin joined the NEC Group in 2011, overseeing the redirection of Amadeus and transformation of the business through management restructure, revised procurement strategy, new business targets and greater accountability through a full-scale cultural change.

Amadeus is now one of the UK’s most reputable venue and event caterers, delivering catering solutions to over four million visitors a year at Group venues, as well as external events and venues.

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Tony Williamson

Group Operations Director

Tony Williamson

Group Operations Director

Tony joined the NEC Group as Group Operations Director in 2019 with responsibility for multiple functions to all Group venues including engineering, estates and facilities management.

He has over 20 years experience in the FM industry working in multiple sectors and previously held positions with the BBC and Interserve.

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Mark Worley

Group Financial Controller

Mark Worley

Group Financial Controller

Mark has worked for the Group for more than 30 years and was promoted to Group Financial Controller over 10 years ago.

Mark leads the Group Finance Team that provides business support to the Corporate functions and is responsible for the Group’s consolidated management and statutory reporting and tax compliance.

Mark has led the Group purchasing team since 1 February 2021.

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Nicola Young

Group Marketing Director

Nicola Young

Group Marketing Director

Nicola is an experienced Marketing Director with a rich history of working in the events and consumer goods industries.

She joined the NEC Group in 2012 as Marketing Services Director and progressed to Group Marketing Director in 2015.

Nicola held director positions with major brewer, Molson Coors, prior to joining the Group and initially honed her marketing knowledge in managerial roles with Procter & Gamble.