leadership team

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Mark Newton, Managing Director of CoSector – University of London has over 29 years of experience in operational, technical and IT roles, with a strong track record of delivering change initiatives across business critical operations in a range of sectors by identifying creative and pragmatic solutions.

At CoSector – University of London, Mark is responsible for leading the business comprising Digital and ICT, Student Housing, Recruitment and Events, line managing circa 120 staff. CoSector’s purpose is to improve student experience and outcomes by working with organisations to help them optimise their investment in education. Aiming to be a provider of choice for a range of services which enrich learning and education.

Previous to joining CoSector, Mark held a role for eight years at Ealing Council, where he was director of business services. Here he was responsible for ICT, Property & Facilities Management, Strategic Procurement and HR Shared Services. During his time at Ealing, Mark developed a 5-year ICT strategy which saw the refresh of an aging ICT infrastructure to enable the Council’s key delivery objectives, securing approval of Executive Board and elected members. Previous to this, Mark spent 18 years in a variety of technical operational and senior management roles at the BBC, including head of IT and technical support in BBC News.

Mark holds an MBA (with merit) from the University of Westminster and a BSc (Hons) Applied Physics from Portsmouth. Further to this, Mark completed a senior leadership accreditation from Ashridge during his time at the BBC.

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James Silcock, Commercial Director, has more than 30 years experience of managing and developing companies. He has led these companies through start-up, re-organisation, acquisition, divestment, turnaround and growth. 

James has spent the last 20 years in Senior Business Development and Commercial roles spanning Consultancy, Business Process Outsourcing, SaaS, Software Publishing and IT Services Management. His understanding of both Domestic and European markets encompasses Mergers and Acquisitions, Direct Sales, Business Development and Marketing in the Financial Services, Government and Education markets. 

At CoSector – University of London, James is responsible for driving the company’s business development and commercial value forwards. Specifically developing and implementing marketing and business development plans that maintain and increase existing business and open up new market opportunities. His key successes in this area have been the development of the company’s business strategy that focuses on the Learner’s Journey and Student Experience. 

James holds a Business of Science Biotechnology degree and a Master of Science Information Technology degree from De Montfort University Leicester, a Master of Arts Marketing degree from Kingston Business School, as well being a certified Direct Marketer from the Institute of Digital and Direct Marketing and is a Google Certified Digital Marketer. 


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Dave Kenworthy, Director of Digital Services has over 17 years of experience of leading the delivery of commercial IT services including software, infrastructure, platform and professional services.

 At CoSector, Dave leads the Digital Services team, circa 60 staff, responsible for delivering high quality, cost-effective IT and digital solutions to over 300 UK institutions, and over one million HE & FE users.  Dave’s key focus at CoSector, in a rapidly changing digital world, is to continuously embed solutions and processes which enable our customers to enricheducation and learning through innovative and sustainable services, and ultimately enhance the student experience.

Prior to joining University of London in 2012, Dave spent over 10 years in software engineering at global engineering firm, Bühler. Dave moved from a graduate position to leading the software team and in doing so transformed the full software lifecycle - producing more reliable, better-functioning software delivered, tested and released efficiently through automation.

Dave holds a Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Modern History, Economic History and Politics from Royal Holloway, University of London 2:1 (Hons) and a Master of Science (MSc) in Computer Science (Distinction) from UCL.

Martin Wills, Transformation and Operations Director - Martin is a versatile, adaptable and innovative senior business leader with extensive experience of leading organisations through challenging transformations to achieve profitability and sustainable growth.  

At CoSector – University of London, Martin has driven shaping the business following a merger of 3 previous separate divisions in 2015. He lead the team through transformation focusing on efficiency, processes and growth areas, focusing particularly on the Housing and Recruitment services teams. 

He has extensive experience of operating at board level and has a proven track record of delivery in: Education; Utilities; Powered Access; Financial Services; Pharmaceuticals (FMCG); Automotive & logistics industries for blue-chip organisations.  

Following reading Economics at the University of Leicester Martin spent the 10 years in Retail banking in a variety of roles starting in Branch Management before moving into Head Office and project based roles. 

Subsequently, Martin moved on to work in the Utility sector. Here he he held a number senior roles in Strategy, Change and Transformation, working across HR, Finance and IT. Also during this period Martin gained a Masters in Service Management, specialising in Human Resources and the people aspect of change and Lean process automation. Then he attended Ashridge Business School to complete the Leading Strategy and Change course. 

Over the last ten years Martin has held a number of Director Roles, principally with Lavendon Group (at the time a FTSE 250 company) and GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) and also operated as a Management consultant doing work for Tata, JaguarLandRover (JLR) and Thames Water. During this time Martin also gained an expertise in Business reporting and analytics.

Andrew Smith, Associate Finance Director - As Associate Finance Director at CoSector, Andrew has responsibility for the financial health of the business. He combines operational and strategic roles, managing reporting and financial control functions, and he has also established a financial strategy for the profitable long-term growth of the business. 

“I think Co-Sector has the potential to develop into something quite remarkable and unique, both within in the HE sector and beyond, and I am very much looking forward to being a part of that”. 

After initially studying law at both university and postgraduate level, and having previously worked in publishing and financial services, Andrew began his career as an accountant working for Their Royal Highnesses the Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall.

Andrew then moved into the Third Sector where he began focussing his efforts on the financial planning and analysis side of the business as this was where he felt he could add most value. 

Most recently, prior to joining CoSector, Andrew was working as Financial Controller for a group of specialist PR companies focussed on the pharmaceutical industry.