Mike is a practised industry leader with 25+ years hands-on experience across Digital Infrastructure, Data Center, IT and Telecoms businesses. He is a seasoned director, founder and entrepreneur having founded, grown, and exited numerous businesses successfully before joining Portman Partners.
Mike has an established track record of structuring, restructuring, and building successful and cohesive teams globally. Through his career in United Kingdom, Europe, South Africa, and Africa he has developed excellent technical knowledge, a true grasp of multicultural and multinational organisations and an impressive industry network.
Mike has contributed to, and undertaken, some significant, and some industry first projects including installing the first blow fibre installation in South Africa for British Airways, installing bespoke networks for Schlumberger in Port Harcourt & Lagos, Nigeria, and digitising part of the Mozambique Defence Armed Forces (FADM) systems in Maputo in the late 1990s. Mike also contributed to building a mud brick and limestone ‘Data Center’ in Timbuktu, Mali which was used to digitise ancient scrolls and manuscripts from excavation sites in the surrounding desert in the early 2000s.
Mike started his first business in South Africa in 2003, a cabling company initially which Mike transitioned into a successful provider of managed services, Data Center services, software, and physical network infrastructure across Africa, which he operated until exiting via an MBO in 2009.
In 2010 Mike joined 8 Solutions Limited in the UK and was instrumental in developing the business through Buy & Build for private investment powerhouse Sovereign Capital Partners. The business made one strategic acquisition developing the Group’s UK coverage further, in terms of both customer penetration and operational reach. 8S developed its range of services both in the UK and overseas to offer both consultancy and fulfilment projects across four continents. At exit the business provided services in 16 countries worldwide and had a UK and international blue-chip customer base, providing mission-critical services to many FTSE 100 clients, ranging from retail to investment banks to telecoms providers.
In 2018 Mike founded Critical Facilities Solutions Ltd with backing from a private investor. CFS provided fit-out, firestopping, flooring and cleaning services & solutions to the construction and live operational Data Center & Mission Critical sectors across EMEA.
Mike has been searching for the best talent to grow his businesses for over 25 years and now he’s focused on searching for the best talent to grow Portman Partners client’s businesses after joining in 2022. His in-depth understanding of business growth strategies, development cycles and leadership challenges stand him in good stead to help Portman’s clients find the best leadership talent in the industry.