Istoria’s new CCO vows to be ‘champion for its great story’ on innovation and sustainability

March 18, 2021

Bristol-based creative group Istoria, which owns businesses in the exhibitions, events, publishing and interior design sectors, has appointed Mark Eddy as its new chief commercial officer.

Mark, pictured, joins from live events giant GES where, as CCO, he led a commercial team of 80 across the Europe, the Middle East, Australia, South Africa and Far East deliver experiential marketing projects in more than 45 industry sectors. 

In his new role at Istoria he will identify, develop and deliver the group’s annual strategies and take its creativity and sustainability to a wider commercial audience.

He will also be CCO of the group’s individual creative businesses, which include exhibitions, events and experiences agency Ignition and retail and hospitality designers Phoenix Wharf, as part of his group-wide remit for sales and operations.

Istoria Group CEO Sam Rowe, pictured below, said: “We are delighted with the new appointment. Mark is a highly-experienced and informed board-level executive, with a great track record in delivering strategic business growth.

“Culturally, we believe he will be a great fit with our purpose-driven, ethical mission and our focus on ‘people, planet and profit’, including our drive to make the creative sector more sustainable by offering a wide range of innovative and bespoke outcomes.”

Mark added: “I’ve known about Istoria Group for a long time and have watched its growth and growing stature with interest.

“My ambitions are to be a champion for the group’s great story and to amplify it to a much wider audience, both by sector and geography, bringing the good news to those clients in particular who understand the benefits of working with a purpose-driven, game-changing company.”

Mark began his events industry career in the late 90s with Silver Knight Exhibitions, part of MICE Group, where he met and worked alongside future Istoria group founder and chair Claire Menzies.

He then became managing director of Melville Teamworks, a division of GES, and then head of business development for Service Exhibitions (part of the St Ives group), prior to joining Coventry-headquartered GES, where he worked for 13 years, the last seven as CCO.

As a result, his experience covers almost every major industry sector, from aerospace, aviation, automotive and apparel to telecommunications, food and packaging. 

One of his major focus areas at Istoria will be its largest creative company Ignition, which designs and produces exceptional live events, exhibitions and experiences around the world and has created a strong reputation for its pioneering sustainable approach and strong ethical corporate personality.

This includes a focus on quality (with three ISO standards to its name), people management skills (with awards including ‘Best Employer’ at the EN Elite Awards and being part of the ‘UK’s Best Workplaces’) and a focus on sustainability, recognised in 2020 both with The Queen’s Award for Enterprise for Sustainable Development and being named Sustainable Organisation of the Year at the IEMA Sustainability Awards.

Other companies within the group – which rebranded from Blue Flint Group two years ago – are Phoenix Wharf, which specialises in strategy, graphics, spatial and digital design for ambitious retail and hospitality brands, and Tiny Spark, which offers purposeful digital experiences

It also has two ‘incubator hub’ companies – I am a Bookworm, a publisher of children’s novelty books, board books, picture books and bath books, and Solverboard, an innovation management platform that helps organisations bridge the gap between creativity and actualisation.

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