Dick Baines, Chairman
Dick was educated in Electronic Engineering at Loughborough University. He then joined one of the Schlumberger divisions to sell electronic test equipment. This he did successfully both in the UK and worldwide including living in Canada for a period.
Dick then joined Trend Communications Ltd a manufacturer of data communications and electronic systems and became Marketing and Sales Director.
Together with others he grew the company rapidly setting up new divisions selling networking, particularly to the British government and to the export market.
In 1986 Dick, together with his colleagues, completed a management buy-out and in 1989 sold the company on to Telemetrix Corporation.
Dick then started Charles Systems Ltd a company established to help American start-ups in Europe. In 1992 Dick helped Ascend Communications start their activities in Europe and was with the company as Vice President Europe in 1999 when it was sold to Lucent Technologies for $20 billion.
In the last 6 years Dick has been non-executive Director to a number of companies in the networking industry. Amongst these are MBA, who sell software to Stockbrokers and Memset®, who sell computer storage space to small businesses.
Ken Smith, Company Secretary & Finance Director
Ken Smith BA CA has been in the technology sector for over 30 years, specialising in rapidly-growing or distressed SMEs. His experience includes many acquisitions, mergers and divestments, as well as four years as CEO of Clarity Commerce Solutions PLC, an AIM listed international technology business providing PoS and related software to the leisure and retail sectors.
He started his career with Deloittes in Glasgow, later transferring to the Nairobi practice where he stayed for four years. Returning to the UK, he joined Alphameric plc, a listed IT group, and became Finance Director in 1990, playing a leading role in the company’s successful turnaround. In 1996 he established his own consulting practice to help early stage or troubled businesses, a practice he maintained for ten years until being asked to lead Clarity’s turnaround strategy, which concluded successfully with the company’s sale in late 2011.
Ken continues to work with small businesses with potential, acting in commercial and financial roles.
Ian Craig-Wood, Non-executive Director
Ian started his business career with IBM where he was a systems analyst, a mainframe salesman and an instructor (UK and USA). In 1974 with his brother Dougal, Ian founded Alphameric plc - where he cut Z80 code with Dr Mike Bradford. Alphameric grew strongly - specialising in bespoke equipment mostly for the financial markets and in 1983 Alphameric went public. Two years later it gained a quote on the LSE.
From 1990 Ian became an investor/director in several hi-tech SMEs and startups. (He helped found Neural Technologies Ltd which provides fraud protection for 1 in 7 of mobile phones worldwide).
Ian brings a great deal of experience to the Memset® Board - the result (he says) of having made lots of interesting business mistakes. Ian has an MBA from Harvard/MIT and an MA in Physics/Maths from Cambridge. He is married with six children. He enjoys flying biplanes, sailing, walking dogs, music and books.
Mike Bradford, Non-executive Director
Aged 55 Chief Executive MBA Systems
With degrees in Philosophy, Economics and Computer Science Mike began work for High-tech start up company Inmos at their UK R&D centre where he worked on the development of specialist computer languages used in the implementation and programming of the Transputer.
He later spent 4 years working as Head of Software Development and in Sales for Alphameric plc, a supplier of ground-breaking financial systems before founding MBA Systems in 1987.
MBA Systems is a leading provider of internet based transaction systems and highly secure hosting services to the banking community.