Max McNeill, Chairman
Founding the company back in October 1990, Max has steered Ultima Business Solutions to become one of the UK’s leading IT solution providers with over 400 employees and a turnover currently exceeding £100m. This has been achieved through pure organic growth, without any outside investment, funding or debt. Max, believes one of his critical roles is ensuring the company never loses sight of its core principles and values. “When I first started Ultima back in the early 1990s I set out some guiding principles, which were based on building long term partnerships with clients based on trust and adding value wherever possible. I have always been determined to ensure that Ultima remains independent, agile, financially robust and employs the best people in the industry. The company ethos is based on a recognition that our customers are at the very heart of every decision we make and that we are entirely in control of our own destiny!”
Scott Dodds, CEO
Scott Dodds has been in the European IT industry for 33 years and has held senior positions in EMEA and the UK with VMware, Microsoft, Acer and Compaq, before joining Ultima Business Solutions in October 2015. He has had full P&L responsibility for multi-billion dollar sales and marketing teams as well as running business operations and planning functions. His breadth of experience spans all customer segments from the largest global enterprises to mid-market and SMBs. Scott comments: “My philosophy is to always live up to the highest levels of personal integrity and transparency, and to gain the trust of team members and customers alike. These are values that are embedded in Ultima’s DNA, making it a special place to work. The relentless focus on our customers’ success is only possible through great team work and genuinely enjoying what we do. It has to be fun to do your best work and keep the best people.”
Dave Rogers, Pre-Sales Director
After gaining a solid technical background in systems, networking, software development and business intelligence, Dave joined Ultima in 2000 to establish a new project management office. Following roles included PMO Lead and Head of Presales, Services Director in 2009 and Pre-Sales Director in 2017. Major achievements include the creation of an extensive in-house services team, a comprehensive portfolio of innovative IT solutions and services, mature engagement and delivery processes, and the development of a complementary partner network. “From day one, I have been determined to ensure that Ultima has a Services Team which listens to our clients and fully understands their needs before delivering consistent, high quality solutions which bring meaningful business benefit. This is achieved through technical expertise, tier 1 vendor accreditations and extensive real world deployment experience. I fervently believe the depth, quality and engagement experience of our team is second to none”.
Kath Edwards, Financial Director
Having worked in financial management positions for 20 years, Kath joined Ultima Business Solutions in 2008 as Finance Manager. Her commercial experience within a number of different industries dealing with systems and processes provided her with the ideal credentials to take on the role as Chief Operating Officer in 2011. With effect from 1st April 2017 Kath moves to the role of Finance Director. As Kath explains: “My mission is to ensure that all systems and processes are as robust and efficient as possible in order to meet customer service level agreements and expectations. I believe it is key that we remain flexible and responsive to exceptional and unforeseen customer demands”.
Gordon Esslemont, Commercial Director
Joining the company in the early 1990s as stock control manager, Gordon’s 24 year career has encompassed a wide range of sales, purchasing and customer services related roles. It was this experience combined with his unrivalled knowledge of the IT distribution channel that led to his appointment as Commercial Director in 2007, where he has overall responsibility for all vendor and supplier relationships. In 2015, Gordon took on the additional role of General Manager of Ultima’s London office with the goal of maximising Ultima’s City presence. “I have been very fortunate to be part of the Ultima journey for over 20 years. With my Commercial Director role, I have always adopted the same partnership and collaborative approach with suppliers and vendors as we do with customers. Whilst Ultima will always remain vendor independent, it is vital we have strong partnerships in order to provide customers with the optimum IT solution.”
Richard Fern, Sales Director
Since 2007, Richard has been responsible for the management and direction of Ultima’s sales and marketing functions. With his passion for building an agile and effective sales teams alongside building long term customer relationships Richard has helped Ultima develop into one of the UK’s leading IT solution providers. Since starting at Ultima, he has overseen a 120%+ growth in both turnover and in the size of salesforce. Richard believes the matching of account managers to customers is key and comments “A key part of my role is recruiting individuals who are going to fit into the Ultima culture, understanding their strengths and then matching them to internal teams and customers. Our mission as an organisation is to become the trusted long term partner of UK businesses and the role of external and internal account managers is critical in the process. My job is to ensure the best conduit exists.”
Simon Walters, Services Director
Simon joined Ultima in 2016 having previously held the role of Director of Managed Services for MTI, where he had overall responsibility across EMEA for Managed Services, IT Services, Service Operations and internal IT Development. He brings a wealth of experience to support the growth and development of our Managed Services business and will add significantly to the outstanding team we already have in place. Prior to joining MTI, Simon held a number of senior service management positions, including Head of EMEA Service Delivery at IPsoft (Managed Services & Outsourcing) and Services Engagement Manager at Allegis Group. With over 20 years’ experience in the technology services sector, Simon brings significant experience in the successful design, delivery and on-going management of a wide variety of complex global contracts for multi-national organisations.
Jennifer Hall, Group Finance & Legal Officer
Jenny is a Chartered Accountant who joined Ultima in 2001 having previously worked for PriceWaterhouseCoopers. One of her major achievements has been in developing Ultima’s Finance Team into a flexible, multi-skilled close knit group, which is built on strong process knowledge and experience as well as accounting acumen. Jenny comments: “Since starting at Ultima, I have seen significant changes and growth and potentially with even greater expansion in the future. A key part of my role as Group Finance & Legal Officer from 1st April 2017 is to ensure the Ultima Group companies (including Ultima Business Solutions, Ultima Risk Management, Ultima Properties Ltd) comply with all the legal and statutory obligations".
Joe Solari, Non-Executive Director
Joe joined the Ultima Board in 2001, following 40 years of CEO level management experience in the IT industry both in the UK and internationally with high profile global vendors. Joe uses his considerable IT sector experience and successful business track record to provide independent and impartial advice to the Board. With his extensive network of contacts and daily market research, he reports on market trends and opportunities. Joe also mentors individual Board members on different aspects of the business. The major focus of Joe’s advice and input is on areas that will ultimately enhance the customers’ experience and generate tangible business benefits. Continuous improvement is an absolute must in Joe’s eyes as he explains “In a world of rapid change and aggressive competition if you are not getting better, you are getting worse. Customer satisfaction, growth and profitability come from continuously adding value to the customer proposition”.