Our directors

  • R Remuneration & Appointments Committee
  • A Audit Committee
  •   Chairman
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Nick Prest

Chairman

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Term in office

Nick became Chairman of Cohort on flotation in March 2006.

Background and experience

After graduating from Oxford in 1974 Nick joined the UK MOD. In 1982 Nick moved to Alvis, the defence contractor, undertaking a variety of roles before becoming Chief Executive in 1989 and Chairman and Chief Executive in 1996. Nick left Alvis following its acquisition by BAE Systems in 2004, by which time the company had become a leading international business in military land systems.

Nick was also Chairman of Aveva Group plc from 2006 until 2012.

External appointments

In addition to being Chairman of Cohort, Nick is also Chairman of Shephard Group, a privately owned media company specialising in defence and aerospace.

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Andrew Thomis

Chief Executive

Term in office

Andrew took over as Chief Executive of Cohort in May 2009.

Background and experience

Andrew graduated with an M.Eng degree in Electrical and Electronic Engineering from Imperial College London in 1987. He spent nine years in science, technology and policy roles in the UK MOD. He left in 1996 and, after a period working with public and private sector clients at Capita plc’s management consultancy arm, he joined Alvis in a role covering strategy, M&A and business development. Following the acquisition of Alvis by BAE Systems in 2004, he worked with Nick Prest and Stanley Carter on the creation of Cohort plc, acting as Finance Director during the flotation and subsequently Corporate Development Director. From 2007 to 2009 he was Managing Director of MASS. Andrew is a Fellow of the Institution of Engineering and Technology.

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Simon Walther

Finance Director and Company Secretary

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Term in office

Simon joined Cohort as Finance Director in May 2006.

Background and experience

After graduating with a BSc in Toxicology and Pharmacology from University College London, Simon went on to qualify as a Chartered Accountant with Touche Ross in 1992. Simon moved to the Peninsular and Oriental Steam Navigation Company (P&O) in 1993 where he was appointed a Chief Accountant for P&O European Ferries in 1995. He has 20 years’ industry-relevant experience, with previous senior finance roles at Alvis and BAE Systems.

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Stanley Carter

Non-executive Director

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Term in office

Stanley has been with Cohort since its formation, initially as its Chief Executive before becoming Co-Chairman in 2009. In 2015, Stanley stepped down from Co-Chairman to become a Non-executive Director.

Background and experience

Stanley jointly founded Cohort with Nick Prest in 2006 with SCS as the launch vehicle on flotation. Prior to that he was Managing Director of SCS, which he founded in 1992 on leaving the Regular Army. During his military service as a Royal Artillery Officer he held a wide range of posts in the MOD’s central staff, in procurement and at government research establishments, and represented the UK on NATO technical committees. He received an award for the invention of a missile launcher from the UK MOD. He has held a number of directorships in technology companies and has degrees in Technology and Behavioural Science and an MSc in Information Systems.

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Jeff Perrin

Independent Non-executive Director and Senior Independent Director

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Term in office

Jeff joined Cohort on 1 July 2015.  He is Chairman of the Audit Committee.  Jeff was appointed Senior Independent Director on 23 July 2019.

Background and experience

A Chartered Certified Accountant, Jeff has held a number of senior financial positions including roles within Unilever, Oriflame, and the defence businesses of GEC and Radstone Technology Plc. In the latter company, he was also Chief Executive for four years until his departure a year after its acquisition by the General Electric Company in 2006.  He was Chairman of the private equity-backed defence company, Chess Technologies Limited, from 2008 until its acquisition by Cohort on 12 December 2018.

External appointments

Jeff is also Chairman of the private equity-backed defence company Chess Technologies Ltd, a position he has held since 2008.

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Sir Robert Walmsley KCB, FREng

Non-executive Director

Term in office

Sir Robert joined the Board of Cohort on flotation in March 2006. He was Chairman of the Remuneration & Appointments Committee until 23 July 2019.

Background and experience

Sir Robert served in the Royal Navy from leaving school until his final appointment as a Vice Admiral. After retiring from the Navy, he was appointed as Chief of Defence Procurement for the UK MOD, occupying that position from 1996 until 2003. He served on the British Energy board from 2003 until 2009 and until 2012 was a senior adviser at Morgan Stanley International and Chairman of the Major Projects Association. From 2004 until 2015, he served on the board of General Dynamics Corporation in the United States.

External appointments

Sir Robert is on the board of Ultra Electronic Holdings plc and holds a number of other advisory roles in the defence and energy sectors. Since 2013 he has been the independent Chairman of the Department for Work and Pensions’ Universal Credit programme and since 2014 he has been a Crown Representative within the Crown Commercial Service.

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Edward Lowe

Independent Non-executive Director

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Term of office

Ed was appointed to the Board on 1 July 2019, and became Chairman of the Remuneration and Appointments Committee on 23 July 2019.

Background and experience

Ed joined Racal Electronics in 1980 and, over a twenty-year period, undertook a variety of commercial, sales and managerial roles. In 2000, he was appointed Vice President within Thales UK with responsibility for the commercial, sales and strategy functions. In 2005 he was appointed Managing Director of the Thales UK naval activities and led the international business line for naval platforms and services. In 2010 he was appointed Chief Operating Officer for Thales UK with operational responsibility for all Thales UK activities.

External appointments

Ed remains as an adviser to Thales UK.