Board of Directors

The Board of Imperial Tobacco Group PLC, which meets at least five times a year, currently comprises a Non-Executive Chairman, six Non-Executive Directors and three Executive Directors.

There's a clear separation of the roles of Chairman and Chief Executive to ensure an appropriate balance of power and authority. The Board is supported by John Downing in his role as Company Secretary.

Mark Williamson, Alison Cooper, Oliver Tant, Matthew Phillips and Ken Burnett

Alison Cooper, BSC, ACA

Chief Executive

Skills and experience

Since being appointed as Chief Executive Alison has led the development and implementation of the Group’s sustainable sales growth strategy. Alison joined the Group in 1999 and, through a number of senior roles, has contributed significantly to the international expansion of the Group.

Appointment

Appointed Director in July 2007. Appointed Chief Executive in May 2010.

External appointments

Non-Executive Director, Inchcape plc since July 2009.

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Oliver Tant, BSc, CA (Scotland)

Chief Financial Officer

Skills and experience

Oliver held a number of senior positions in a 32 year career at KPMG, including Global Managing Director Financial Advisory and Private Equity Division and Head of UK Audit. He was also a member of both the UK and German boards of KPMG. He brings to Imperial a good deal of international experience in change management, organisational restructuring, corporate finance and mergers and acquisitions.

Appointment

Appointed to the Board of Directors in October 2013 and became Chief Financial Officer in November 2013.

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Matthew Phillips, LLB

Corporate Affairs Director

Skills and experience

Matthew has held a number of senior roles including Company Secretary, General Counsel and Group Corporate and Legal Affairs Director prior to his appointment to the Board as Corporate Affairs Director in June 2012. 

Appointment

Appointed Corporate Affairs Director, June 2012.

External appointments

No external Director appointments.

 

Image library

Download images of Board members and senior management

Presentations and interviews

Investor Day presentations

12 July 2011

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Mark Williamson, CA (SA)

Chairman of the Board

Skills and experience

Mark is a qualified accountant, who brings considerable financial and general managerial experience to our Board and who meets the recent and relevant financial experience requirements of the UK Corporate Governance Code. Mark was Chief Financial Officer of International Power plc until 2012 and has considerable experience of managing relationships with the investor and financial communities.

Prior to joining International Power plc, Mark was Group Financial Controller and Group Chief Accountant of Simon Group.

Appointment

Mark joined the Board in July 2007 and was appointed Senior Independent Non-Executive Director in February 2012. He was subsequently appointed Deputy Chairman of the Board in January 2013 before being made Chairman in February 2014.

Committee membership

Chairman of the Nominations Committee.

External appointments

Senior Independent Non-Executive Director and Chairman of the Audit Committees of National Grid plc and of Alent plc.

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Ken Burnett, MA, MBA, PHD, M Inst M

Non-Executive Director

Skills and experience

Ken, an independent management consultant, brings significant experience of the consumer goods sector in the Asia Pacific region. He was President, Asia Pacific of Allied Domecq from 1996 until its acquisition by Pernod Ricard in 2005.

Prior to joining Allied Domecq, he held senior management positions in the Asia Pacific region with Seagram, Interbrew and International Distillers & Vintners Ltd (now part of Diageo plc).

Appointment

Appointed Non-Executive Director in April 2006.

Committee membership

Nominations Committee, Audit Committee and Remuneration Committee.

External appointments

Non-Executive Chairman of Elemental Energy Technologies Limited.  Director of Elemental Energy Technolgies (Asia) Pte Limited.

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David Haines, Michael Herlihy, Susan Murray, Karen Witts, Oliver Tant, Malcolm Wyman and John Downing

David Haines

Non-Executive Director

Skills and experience

David brings considerable senior level board experience and is currently Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Grohe Group S.àr.l. He joined Grohe in 2004 from Vodafone Group PLC where he was Global Marketing Director. He is also a former Chairman of Vimpelcom A/O. David gained extensive general management experience with Vodafone Plc and Mars Inc. earlier in his career.

Appointment

Appointed Non-Executive Director in February 2012.

Committee membership

Chairman of the Remuneration Committee and member of the Nominations Committee and Audit Committee.

External appointments

Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Grohe Group S.àr.l., Director of Joyou AG.

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Michael Herlihy, MA (Oxon), Solicitor

Senior Independent Non-Executive Director

Skills and experience

Michael is General Counsel for Smiths Group plc. He was formerly General Counsel and Head of Mergers and Acquisitions for ICI PLC with overall responsibility for corporate acquisitions and divestments and has extensive experience of both private and public market transactions.

Appointment

Appointed Non-Executive Director in July 2007. In February 2014 he was appointed as Senior Independent Non-Executive Director.

Committee membership

Audit, Remuneration and Nominations Committee.

External appointments

Serves on the board of Compass Partners International LLP and Compass Partners Investments LLP and is currently General Counsel of Smiths Group plc.

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Susan Murray CCMI

Non-Executive Director

Skills and experience

Susan brings to the Board a wealth of international general management, strategy and marketing experience, as a former Chief Executive of Littlewoods Stores Limited and worldwide President and Chief Executive of The Pierre Smirnoff Company.

Susan has considerable experience as a Non-Executive Director. She is a former Non-Executive Director of SSL International plc, Aberdeen Asset Management PLC, Wm Morrison Supermarkets plc and a former council member of the Advertising Standards Authority.

Appointment

Appointed Non-Executive Director in December 2004.

Committee membership

Member of Nominations Committee.

External appointments

Non-Executive Chairman of Farrow & Ball and Non-Executive Director of Pernod Ricard SA, and Compass Group PLC. Susan is also a fellow of the Royal Society of Arts.

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Karen Witts

Non-Executive Director

Skills and experience

Karen brings significant financial and management expertise to the Board. She is currently Group Finance Director and Executive Director of Kingfisher plc and was previously Chief Financial Officer of the Africa, Middle East, Asia and Asia Pacific Region, at Vodafone plc. Prior to that Karen held a number of senior positions at BT, including Chief Financial Officer of BT Retail and Managing Director Enterprises. Her earlier career included finance and management roles at Diageo (previously Grand Metropolitan PLC) and Mars Electronics.

Appointment

Appointed Non-Executive Director in February 2014.

Committee membership

Audit, Remuneration and Nominations Committee.

External appointments

Group Finance Director and Executive Director of Kingfisher plc.

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Malcolm Wyman, CA (SA)

Non-Executive Director

Skills and experience

As a qualified accountant and former Chief Financial Officer of SAB Miller plc, with responsibility for the group’s financial operations, corporate finance and development and group strategy, Malcolm brings not only a wealth of financial expertise but also considerable general management experience to the Board. He also meets the recent and relevant financial experience requirements of the UK Corporate Governance Code.

Appointment

Appointed Non-Executive Director in October 2011 and Chairman of the Audit Committee in February 2012.

Committee membership

Chairman of Audit Committee; and Member of the Nominations Committee and Remuneration Committee.

External appointments

Senior Independent Non-Executive Director of Nedbank Group Limited and a Non-Executive Director of Tsogo Sun Holdings Limited, both listed on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange. Malcolm is also the Senior Independent Non-Executive Director of Serco Group plc. 

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John Downing

Company Secretary

Skills and experience

John joined Imperial in 2005 having worked for law firm Linklaters. He has had a number of senior legal roles in Imperial and was appointed Head of Group Legal in 2010. He played a leading role in the Altadis acquisition and has considerable experience in managing key corporate projects related to financing, business development and other commercial matters.

Appointment

Appointed Company Secretary in June 2012.

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