On this page, you can find out who sits on our Innovation Board, and download all relevant board papers.

Innovation Board Vision

“To create a long term Innovation Strategy for Leicestershire, which builds collaborations, growth and opportunities, and safeguards the
future prosperity and productivity of our businesses, workforce and communities.”

Members of the Innovation Board

  • Chair – Dr Nik Kotecha OBE, Founder & CEO RandalSun Capital 
  • Vice Chair – Andy Reed MBE, Director SajeImpact Ltd
  • Rachel Tidmarsh, Managing Director Blue Sky International
  • Paul Wright, Quality & Sourcing Director, Dunelm
  • Dr Anthony Baxendale, Head of Horizon Scanning for MIRA
  • Stuart Hetherington, CEO Holovis
  • Dennis Hayter, Head of External Affairs, Intelligent Energy
  • Avtar Singh, Snr Director Strategy, Transformation and Productivity, Pepsico – European SC
  • Stephen Grubb, Director Business Banking, Natwest Bank
  • Ben Ravilious, CEO Ultimate Web /Leicester Start Ups
  • Sajjad Khan, Managing Director Aristec/Leicester Textiles Federation
  • Sandra Wiggins, Director, DPI Limited
  • Charlotte Horobin, Regional Director – Midlands & East of England Make UK
  • Helen Donnellan, Director Enterprise and Business Services De Montfort University
  • Dr Jen Fensome, Director of Research, Loughborough University
  • William Wells, Deputy Director Research, Innovation & Impact, University of Leicester
  • Dr Arash Ghadar, Chief Operating Officer, Nemaura Medical 
  • Anuj Ashar, Founder & CEO, BetaBooster


  • Julian Bowrey, Innovate UK
  • Stephen Grubb, Director Business Banking, NatWest
  • Josephine Dexter, Area Lead, BEIS
  • Sue Tilley, Head of Business & Innovation


Terms of Reference


The Innovation Board will maintain strategic focus and thought leadership in innovation, on behalf of the LLEP Board and support the delivery of innovation activity outlined in the MIT REAP vision document and the overarching Economic Strategy for the area.

1. Responsibilities

  1. Provide the leadership to ensure all partners make their contribution to delivering on the high-level ambitions;
  2. Consider the ‘big picture’, providing strategic advice to the LLEP Board on matters relating to innovation;
  3. Drive and coordinate activity which delivers the strategic objectives of the MIT REAP and Economic Strategy for the LLEP area;
  4. Support the development of the Local Industrial Strategy, Economic Recovery Strategy, identifying actions and interventions and best practice for the Ideas foundation of productivity;
  5. Stimulate greater levels of collaboration between university and businesses in the region;
  6. Assess policies, proposals and programmes of investment linked to innovation regionally, nationally and internationally, providing guidance to the LEP on how they relate to the LLEP areas innovation assets and skills, and identifying any gaps in provision;
  7. Broker and co-ordinate strategic collaborations and relationships across sectors, with Innovate UK, UKRI, other relevant branches of Government, and trade associations and industry bodies, nationally and internationally;
  8. Champion and provide input into strategic projects and game changing opportunities;
  9. Commission task and finish groups where appropriate and where no other sub-board or committee can fulfil the task;
  10. Share strategic intelligence, data and ideas, and commission research and analysis as required;
  11. Connect to and collaborate with regional and national stakeholders that play a role in delivering innovation, continuing to identify gaps and opportunities

2. Reporting Responsibilities

  1. The Chair shall report formally to the LLEP Board on its proceedings after each meeting on all matters within its objectives.
  2. The Chair shall make whatever recommendations to the Board it deems appropriate on any area within its duties where action or improvement is needed.

3. Membership

The Innovation Board will be chaired by a LLEP Board director and will be appointed by the Innovation Board members. The membership will draw from leading businesses and organisations actively involved in innovation strategy and delivery and comprise of a maximum of 15 members including:

  1. Up to three LLEP Directors, one of whom will be appointed as Chair
  2. Representatives from businesses being senior executive officers of an organisation, with at least one representative from each of the LLEPs priority sectors (Advanced Manufacturing and Engineering; Space; Health and Life Sciences and Sport), including at least 1 SME
  3. A senior executive officer from Innovate UK
  4. A senior executive officer from British Business Bank
  5.  A senior representative officer from each the Universities (Leicester, Loughborough and DMU)

The Innovation Board will meet at least four times a year.

Appointments to the Board shall be agreed by the LLEP Board and all appointments to the Innovation Board shall be for a term of 3 years.

4. Format and Timings of Meetings

The meetings and papers of the Innovation Board will be in the same format as and subject to the same conditions as the LLEP Board meetings and papers.

In accordance with the national guidance:

  1. Meeting agendas and papers will be circulated 5 clear working days before the meeting takes place;
  2. Minutes of meetings to be circulated within 10 clear working days of the meeting taking place. This may be in draft if internal LLEP processes require clearance before the minutes are finalised;
  3. The Code of Conduct will apply, and any declaration of interest made at the meeting will be included in the minutes of the meeting. A new declaration of interest will be updated on the relevant member’s register of interest;
  4. The quorum necessary for the transaction of business shall be five members. The meetings can either be conducted in person or virtually;
  5. Where a meeting of is not quorate no business shall be transacted other than information items for consideration and a vote as to the date the meeting will be reconvened;
  6. Each member has one vote and decisions will be carried by a simple majority and the chair will have the casting vote if a majority is not reached;
  7. The agenda for the meetings will be developed in consultation with the Chair.

5. Delegated Authority including limits

The Innovation Board is authorised by the LLEP Board to investigate any activity within the terms of reference and, within its scope of responsibilities, to seek any information it requires and to ensure the attendance of management representatives at meetings as appropriate.