MoD unconcerned by CIO Mike Stone's conflict of interest


MoD unconcerned by CIO Mike Stone's conflict of interest

Caroline Baldwin

The Ministry of Defence (MoD) has put in place provisions to avoid a conflict of interest after appointing Mike Stone as its new CIO.

Stone will remain an employee of the government contractor Serco, which supplies a number of services to the MoD during his time as CIO. But the department has said it has ensured a conflict of interest will not occur during Stone’s employment.

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"Mike Stone's employment is covered by clear conflict of interest provisions and his objectives are all set by the MoD,” said a spokesperson.

Jean Louis Bravard, former global CIO at JP Morgan, who is now senior advisor in the IT services sector said it makes sense for the MoD to choose somebody who understands the supplier market.

“I understand the perception of a conflict of interest, but if you find somebody with absolutely no conflict of interest they probably can’t do the job,” he said.

Last week, Computer Weekly revealed that Stone has been appointed as the new CIO at the MoD, replacing interim CIO Yvonne Ferguson.

Stone was previously chief executive officer of Defence Business Services, an outsourced contract from Serco providing corporate services to the MoD.

According to the MoD, Serco "offered the services of Mike Stone" as CIO, and he will take up the post for an initial period of around a year. Stone has previously been CIO of BT Global Services from 2007 to 2010.

“Mike Stone has already built a reputation within the MOD for being highly delivery-focused and has more than 30 years' experience resolving complex challenges, including during his time in the Army,” said the spokesperson.

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