Mark Hughes MBE, Group Chief Executive, The Growth Company
Mark has been a leading figure in promoting UK trade and investment across the public and private sector for over 25 years.
Mark’s background in international investor & business development stretches back to 1994, when at Ernst and Young’s management consultancy he provided advice to corporate clients on international investment decisions and to European Development Agencies/ Governments on attracting inward invested. Clients included Avis, Black & Decker, Citibank, GE Capital, Coca-Cola, Welsh Development Agency, Scottish Enterprise, Invest in France, Invest in Denmark, Invest in Sweden, ITD Hungary and UKTI. During this time, he was responsible for the creation of the European Investment Monitor, which established EY as a leading commentator on European mobile inward investment projects.
In 2005 Mark joined the North West Development Agency, holding a number of positions, including Executive Director of Economic Development and from 2010 onwards as Chief Executive. During his tenure, he led the development of the Northwest’s Internationalisation Strategy and directly contributed to the Northwest becoming the 2nd largest English export region.
Since 2013 he has been the Group Chief Executive of The Growth Company – a £100m social enterprise which exists to enable growth, create jobs, and improve lives. As the Chief Executive, Mark oversees the strategic delivery of many economically crucial services; from DIT’s Export Services to GM’s award-winning Business Growth Hub – which provides support to over 13,000 local businesses each and every year.
Mark was awarded an MBE for services to business in the North West in the 2013 New Year’s Honours and is the current chair of the Northern Powerhouse Trade and Investment Forum.