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European technology CEOs get new support organisation

Antony Savvas

A new organisation to give support to European technology CEOs, including those at firms newly established by venture capital, has been founded.

The European Leadership Programme (ELP) will encourage CEOs to develop using each other's expertise and that of recognised specialists in a variety of skills fields.

The ELP is headed up by Ashley Ward, who has been a CEO at various firms, and creative development expert Natalie Turner, who is responsible for researching and designing the ELP learning and development programme.

The ELP is operated as an entirely independent business and is supported by sponsoring partners specialising in support of high growth businesses.

These include executive search firm Nexec Partners, law firm Kemp Little, communications agency Skywrite, WPP-owned marketing agency Banner, investment bank GPBullhound, and executive coaching firm Praesta.

ELP says 35 technology and media CEOs and leaders have so far joined to form the ELP, and numbers are expected to grow as awareness spreads.

Ward said: “There has been an enormous change in the attitude of venture capitalists towards helping their CEOs, but individual portfolio networking groups have only provided part of the answer.

“The ELP is unique in that it provides a confidential and structured environment where CEOs can benefit from one another's different expertise and skills, gain essential advice from experts, and debate subjects critical to their performance as CEOs. This approach has had resounding support from leading VCs,” said Ward.

Ian Lobley, senior partner of leading venture capitalist 3i Venture, said, “As an industry, initiatives such as the ELP will gain our support - this programme is designed for the sole purpose of improving the chances of success for the leaders of portfolio companies. This has to be positive for all stakeholders involved."

The European Leadership Programme >>

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