Operations Team

Robin Daniels

Robin Daniels

Chief Executive Officer

“Robin Daniels is a big picture thinker with superb interpersonal skills. His ability to build bridges across disciplines and sectors is absolutely first rate, and sorely needed to confront some of today’s most pressing challenges.”
-Amy C. Edmondson, Novartis Professor of Leadership and Management, Harvard Business School

Robin's biography

C-suite business leader, strategist and serial entrepreneur. Primarily interested in rapid business growth and innovation opportunities around B2B, IoT/M2M, mHealth, Big Data and future city technologies.

Founder & Managing Director of Redpill Group Ltd; strategy consultants and innovators in urban technologies and commercial development. We work internationally with cities, companies and universities to deliver sustainable solutions to complex challenges.

Co-Founder & CEO of EzLab Systems Ltd, the technology innovation and product development company, working across the physical and life sciences to create and take to market truly disruptive solutions to some of the world’s most pressing challenges.

Previously Co-Founder and CEO of Magma Innovations, the global Smart City, Internet of Things and Integrated Mobility consultancy. This followed Advisory Board Member and Executive Vice President roles with Living PlanIT, where I established and led global sales & marketing and corporate & business development.

Formerly founding CEO of the Norwich Research Park, Europe’s largest single-site life science park, where I was responsible for creating and executing a new vision, brand, strategy, marketing and commercial plan for the Park.

Prior to this I was founding COO of the Centre for Scientific Enterprise Ltd, a joint venture between the London Business School and UCL. In parallel I was Director of the Chevening Technology Enterprise Scholarship, which generated £50m of VC investment and technology licensing from start-ups, representing a 10x ROI for the UK Government.

Karen Woodward

Karen Woodward

Head of Operations

Karen has an academic background in Food Science and Technology having achieved her BSc (Hons) at Leeds University in 1990. After this Karen went into the food manufacturing industry with United Biscuits (KP Foods) undertaking several production management roles and specialist projects, including helping to set up a new Hula Hoops factory in Ashby de la Zouch.

Karen's biography

Karen is passionate about people management and performance management and left KP Foods after 10 years for an equivalent spell with Investors in People UK during which time she became Head of Practitioner Management for the South West.

Karen joined SWBC in November 2011 to enable her to return to a more client facing and hands-on project management role. Karen is Head of Operations and responsible for the day to day management of SWBC’s member network, SWBC events and any new business development and contract delivery.

Karen has a keen interest in helping businesses overcome challenges; by understanding their requirements and priorities, facilitating projects and brokering partnerships for collaborative working. Karen is a ‘connector’ and hands-on project manager.

In her spare time, Karen enjoys gardening, dog walking and being a roadie for a local pub band.

Email: karen.woodward@swbc.co.uk.

Mike Elsey

Mike Elsey

Senior Account Manager

Mike has a broad commercial background encompassing various senior roles in the advertising and media sectors, and latterly over two years fundraising experience in the conservation charity sector. A career in the advertising business spanning some 30 years included board level positions at both agencies and as a media owner.

Mike's biography

He has spent the bulk of his working life in London, employed with advertising agencies Boase Massimi Pollitt then Young and Rubicam, followed by sales roles at broadcasters ITV and Channel Four. He’s worked with a diverse range of businesses over the years, from retail to media, utilities to financial services, private and public sector.

After a 5 year stint as Commercial Director with ITV Channel Television based in Jersey, returning to the UK in 2013 Mike and his family decided to relocate from Buckinghamshire to Devon. He has a smallholding in Colyford, and is thoroughly enjoying the life change, renovating a Grade 2 listed property and developing a small holiday cottage business.

MIke’s first role in Devon was working with Devon Wildlife Trust as a fundraiser. In his time with that organisation, he took the lead in organising and managing DWT’s most successful fundraising event in its 50-year history, a sell out classical music concert at Exeter Cathedral. He also masterminded and delivered an innovative crowd funding appeal for the wild beavers on the River Otter, fronted by Chris Packham. It proved to be the most successful crowd funding campaign for a UK wildlife conservation initiative to date.

Mike has quickly established new connections, contacts and friendships through his employment at DWT, and outside of work through varied social and community involvement. He is currently Chair of the Holyford Woodland Trust, England’s 1000th Local Nature Reserve.

Mike joined SWBC as Senior Account Manager in August 2017 to work alongside Karen and with our growing network of members. Mike is responsible for managing key accounts and business development.

Email: mike.elsey@swbc.co.uk.

Kate Williams

Kate Williams

Digital Marketing Manager

Kate started her career at a Licensing Agency in London, who specialised in Fashion and Lifestyle brands such as Aston Martin, BMW and Nintendo. Then moving onto working in house at The Range, on a multi-million pound e-commerce website; which is where her passion for Marketing, especially Digital Marketing really began.

Kate's biography

After spending almost 3 years employed by Mercedes-Benz, one of the world’s most luxurious car manufacturers. She concentrated on their Digital presence and how each channel can impact brand awareness, core messaging and ROI.

Following on from that Kate then went to work for Digital Marketing Agency Optix Solutions where she experienced agency lifestyle first hand. Working with City Vehicle Leasing, Pipers Farm, Crealy Great Adventure Park, Saunton Golf Club and Exeter Golf and Country Club everyday gave her a new perspective on the Digital world. 

In May 2017 Kate decided to go it alone and take the leap, be her own boss, have her own clients and be proud of the high quality work that she is producing. We are proud to welcome Kate to the team and introduce you to www.kwmarketinguk.co.uk.

Jo McConville

Jo McConville

Virtual Assistant

Jo has a law degree and is an experienced Company Secretary. After a short time in private practice, Jo worked in-house for a FTSE 250 company and AXA Group PLC. Jo moved to Devon 14 years ago and spent 7 years as the Company Secretary of The Dartington Hall Trust.

Jo's biography

Jo uses the experience gained in those roles to provide business, administrative and PA support either virtually or in client’s offices as needed.

Jo joined the SWBC team in January 2018 and provides admin support to the operations team and to the Boards.

Andrew Searle

Andrew Searle

Accounts

Andrew is an experienced director with multiple disciplines having acted as MD, FD and Director of Engineering. Andrew has 20 years experience of taking responsibility for financial; IT; project management; risk management and mergers & acquisitions and in taking a lead role in responding to crises and opportunities.

Andrew's biography

Andrew works for SWBC on a part time, self-employed basis helping them to keep administrative and compliance costs to a minimum whilst offering a friendly efficient service to our customers and suppliers.

Andrew is an experienced accountant and director helping SME’s deliver results and stay compliant and runs his own business: origamigroup.co.uk.