Our world-class team is the lifeforce of Ascensos and we are fortunate to have the very best talent in the customer experience industry – people who have been here and done this before. Our experienced Leadership Team keeps #theAteam on the path to success. They unite us in our mission to provide world-class customer service and inspire us to delight our clients and their customers every step of the way. Every day.
Executive Chairman & Co-Founder
Outsourcing & Executive Leadership | 30+ years beCogent, Transcom Worldwide S.A, Early Learning Centre, Smythsons, Regal Hotel Group.
Dermot brings over 30 years of outsourcing and contact centre experience to Ascensos, including his time as Chairman, Founder and Principal Shareholder of beCogent, one of the UK’s most respected contact centre providers and a member of the board at Swedish quoted Transcom Worldwide SA.
In recognition of his commitment to UK enterprise, Dermot was awarded ‘Scottish Entrepreneur of the Year’ in 2009. He also retains a wide range of other business interests, including many years on the boards of John Menzies plc. and the Scottish Friendly Assurance Society.
CEO & Co-Founder
Outsourcing & Executive Leadership | 27+ years
beCogent, Teleperformance, Motorola.
With over 27 years of experience in the BPO and CX arena, John has partnered with leading global brands such as KFC, Peloton, Aldi, B&Q, and Polo Ralph Lauren. He has delivered scalable solutions that have helped transform their customer service provision and significantly improve their customer experience.
John’s entrepreneurial & leadership skills have allowed him to create specialist teams that are focused on results. His steadfast approach to ‘delivering with a personal touch ensures that he remains involved with each of our clients every step of the way.
Prior to forming Ascensos in 2013, John was the Commercial & Operations Director at beCogent and, post-acquisition by Teleperformance in 2010, was Managing Director across their UK business.
In 2021 John was recognised as a Regional Winner and UK National Finalist at the coveted EY Entrepreneur of the Year awards.
As well as being a fanatic about world-class customer experience, John is equally fanatical about football and previously served as a Director and Chairman of Albion Rovers Football Club.
Chief Financial Officer
Finance Leadership | 20 years
John Menzies plc, Heineken, Scottish & Newcastle.
Martin has over 20 years’ leadership experience operating in senior finance positions within significant, fast-moving, international businesses such as John Menzies, Heineken and Scottish & Newcastle.
A Chartered Accountant, his experience spans all key finance disciplines, together with business change. Before joining Ascensos, Martin headed up all aspects of Financial Control within the distribution arm of John Menzies, having previously enjoyed various commercially focused finance roles within Heineken and Scottish & Newcastle.
Martin retains a strong interest in the voluntary sector, particularly working with both young people and those with learning disabilities. He previously served on the board as Chairman of Lung Ha Theatre Company, a leading international theatre company for people with a learning disability based in Edinburgh.
Chief Technology Officer
Outsourcing & Contact Centre Management | 20+ years
beCogent, Teleperformance, Police Scotland.
David has a proven track record in delivering innovative and effective IT solutions to a variety of the best-known brands in Europe.
With his strong background in information security and compliance, David ensures that confidentiality, integrity, and data availability is at the core of every solution we deliver.
Prior to joining Ascensos, David spent two years with Police Scotland leading a transformation team funded by the Scottish Government to ensure the safe technical delivery of solutions during police reform to a single national force. During this period, David was also a management board member that successfully delivered the Scottish Crime Campus.Connect
James M Nikrant
Contact Centre & Executive Leadership | 27+ years
General Electric, Montgomery Ward, APAC, Acme Graphics, DFB Pharmaceuticals and Lil’ Drug Store Products, beCogent.
Jim has considerable experience in the contact centre industry and was previously a shareholder and Non-Executive Director of beCogent.
A graduate of Baldwin Wallace College, Ohio, Jim earned his undergraduate and MBA degrees in business. He then joined the General Electric Company (GE) as a management trainee and enjoyed a distinguished career, holding various senior leadership and executive-level positions.
After his 28-year tenure at GE, Jim has served as Chief Executive and board member for many successful businesses across the United States. He brings this exceptional track record and experience to Ascensos.
Jim has also served on the board of a number of renowned educational establishments; including Mount Mercy University and the Advisory Board for the MBA program at the University of Iowa.Connect
Executive Leadership | 27+ years
Goldman Sachs, OKA Direct Limited, Crew Clothing, LighterLife.
Octavia has extensive experience in consumer industries, including CEO of OKA Direct Limited, Managing Director of Crew Clothing and CEO at LighterLife, a UK weight loss and weight management franchise business.
Having started her career in investment banking at Goldman Sachs, Octavia moved into retail and has enjoyed several roles covering e-commerce, marketing and commercial at Asda, Laura Ashley and Woolworths.
Octavia has also served on the boards of UK public and private businesses for over ten years, currently as a non-executive Director of Ascensos Ltd, Card Factory plc and Crest Nicholson plc.Connect
Finance & Legal | 12+ years
From 2009 Oliver worked at City law firm Peachey & CO LLP, a corporate and commercial practice with a wide range of listed and unlisted clients.
He was made a partner of the firm in 2014, aged 30. Oliver advised at all stages of the corporate life-cycle from incorporation to sale and provided day-to-day commercial advice.
Since 2015, Oliver has been the leading legal adviser for Ascensos, including contract negotiations with clients.
Oliver joined the board of Ascensos in January 2017, where he provides commercial advice in addition to his interactions with the company through Peachey.
In January 2018, Oliver left Peachey to join Finstock Capital (“Finstock”), a private equity vehicle. Finstock invests in a range of opportunities from 100% equity ownership, to more minor equity positions with a board seat, to debt financing and management buyouts.Connect
Chief Operating Officer
Digital Transformation & Executive Leadership | 25+ years
CYBG, National Australia Bank, Virgin Money.
Andrew brings over 25 years of finance, BPO and contact centre experience, holding various senior leadership and executive positions and recently as Market Development Director for Virgin Money. Throughout his career, he has managed contact centre and digital businesses in the UK, in Europe and in Australia.
Throughout his career, Andrew has always worked to deliver his passion for excellence in customer service through an innovative approach to maximising results both for people, for businesses, and ultimately end customers. In recognition of the commitment to setting standards for innovation in customer service, Andrew is a previous winner of both Best Contact Centre in EMEA, and went on to win the world award in Las Vegas, competing against many global PLCs.
Andrew has a broad commercial experience across industry verticals and has helped many SME & Corporate businesses think about their business models and how a strategic combination of BPO and digital transformation can drive value for the organisation and their customers. He greatly advocates technology and its power for positive change, enabling people and customer journey evolution. He has sponsored numerous global programmes to make transformative change enabled by the rapid development of customer-enabling technologies.
He is a fellow of the Chartered Institute of Bankers, sits on the Global Advisory Board for the CCA. He is also a graduate of Strathclyde Business school, where he earned a postgraduate MBA with distinction.
Andrew compliments the existing team with a broad base of commercial and contact centre experience and a collaborative, personalised approach which fits perfectly with the culture of Ascensos.Connect
Director of Client Services
With a background in senior management roles, delivering for brands such as T-Mobile, Three, John Lewis and JD Williams, Stephen is well versed in operational governance and strategic customer experience delivery.
Leading our operation in Clydebank, Stephen has driven considerable transformation for our client, enhancing their CX delivery and reducing customer effort, resulting in his operation expanding across our European sites and doubling in size.
A key part of the Ascensos team nominated as finalists for ‘Best Outsourced Partnership’ at the ECCCSA and awarded winner of ‘Contact Centre Manager of the Year’ with the CCMA, Stephen has undoubtedly made his mark since joining our team.Connect
Director of Market Engagement
Market Engagement | 22 Years
SITEL Consulting, Teleperformance, Concentrix,
Over the past 22 years, William has worked with the world’s leading BPO outsourcers, including SITEL, Teleperformance, and Concentrix, as a Consultant, Director and Board Member.
His passion is developing and implementing the unique relationship approach necessary in BPO to engage and educate the market, which was the focus of his MA in Business Management in 2016.
William is an active member and regular contributor to industry organisations. He is a writer, speaker and general disruptor of all things customer experience (CX) related.
Away from CX management, William is a Non-Executive Director of a welfare and development charity, New Ways, which operates predominantly in Turkana, Northern Kenya, and the up-start Evershare.io, a block-chain based music publishing business. He continues to write, perform and record as a musician.Connect
Outsourcing | 20+ years
beCogent, Teleperformance, BSkyB.
Lyle lives and breathes outsourcing. With over two decades of BPO experience, he has worked in partnership with many brands, such as Peloton, B&Q, Aldi, Wickes and Sky.
With a background in operational management and support roles, such as resource planning and solution building, Lyle focuses on using his expertise to ensure he delivers the best solutions for our clients. He prides himself in providing world-class service and is always available to our clients to offer support in escalation, strategy, and solutions daily.Connect
With over 14 years of experience within the retail, consumer goods and outsourcing industry, Claire has worked with an impressive catalogue of worldwide brands, including; Nestle, Reckitt Benckiser, Carlsberg, Google EMA, Aldi and Sainsbury’s.
She specialises in leading high-performing and engaged teams. Claire joined the Ascensos team in 2018 to lead our multi-award-winning Isle of Wight operation. She places focus on creating positive working environments that deliver results with passion whilst supporting both clients and colleagues to achieve their goals and overcome challenges.Connect
Outsourcing & Contact Centre Management | 14 Years
Concentrix and Telus.
Dan has worked in the customer care and BPO industry for over 12 years. He is a seasoned CX professional, native in French and Romanian, with advanced English.
Having begun his career as an Advisor, before progressing in various project management and operational roles, Dan gained a wealth of BPO experience working across a diverse range of industry sectors before joining Ascensos, as our Head of Operations in 2018.
Well-versed in operational excellence, Dan’s rise through the ranks has matured his solutions-first approach and with it, his commitment to quality and customer satisfaction as he supports our clients to achieve their business objectives.
In his current role as Business Unit Director, Dan brings a sincere enthusiasm to inspire, motivate and lead his growing team of 950+ FTE, at our operations in Bucharest and Istanbul.
And as a licensed pilot, having graduated from the Romanian RAS Flying Academy, the sky is the limit for Dan, when it comes to creating a world-class customer experience for our clients' customers.Connect
Outsourcing & Contact Centre Management | 35 Years
BT, Abbey National, Answercall Direct, Teleperformance.
Steve is a highly experienced SVP / Operations Director with a lengthy track record of successfully managing strategic operations across retail, sales, service, back office and telemarketing business environments.
Steve has worked closely with clients to evolve and deliver transformation programmes throughout his career and is renowned for creating winning teams through his inclusive, nurturing and inspirational management approach.
For almost 20 years, Steve has been a member of the NI Chamber of Commerce and has served on the NICCI Council for six years.Connect
Contact Centres | 23 years
Kwik Fit Insurance, Ageas.
With over 20 years experience in contact centres, Gaynor brings various skills, including senior leadership, operational management, strategic planning, project/programme management and resource planning.
Combining senior leadership with her change management expertise, Gaynor ensures we always deliver added value for our clients.
Her passion is to make a difference to both people and businesses. She plays a hands-on role in developing and delivering CX initiatives that have successfully moved the CX dial for many of our clients.
Gaynor joined #theAteam in 2020 and leads our Motherwell site, ensuring we have an engaged and motivated team driven to deliver a world-class customer experience.
When not working and delivering value, Gaynor enjoys spending time with her family and being outdoors as often as Scottish weather permits.Connect
Global Business Development Lead
Customer Experience through Contact Centre Service and Sales Operations | 20+ years
Bell Mobility, Concentrix, Veeam.
Emil has a proven track record in customer experience generation through managing sales and service, in house, insourced and outsourced operations through various industries such as Telecom, IT, Finance in Canada and Europe.
Emil joined us back in 2021 and he is currently leading the global new business development initiatives on behalf of Ascensos.Connect
Head of Human Resources
Samantha, our top 'people' person, brings over 20 years of HR experience and people management to our team. She not only recruits the best and the brightest talent, but she's also a strong advocate for the ongoing development of our Management Teams and is 100% committed to our diversity and inclusion agenda.
People are at the heart of every decision Samantha makes. She takes the lead on HR and colleague relations, serving as a global escalation point for our colleagues, stakeholders and partners. Her goal is to ensure that Ascensos is a great place to work.
Head of Business Intelligence, Planning & Resource
Michael has a wealth of experience, working in Operational Management, Resource Planning and Management Information. He began his career at beCogent and has since worked at Teleperformance and National Australia Group before joining Ascensos in 2014. He has over 13 years of experience working on various projects, most recently in partnership with B&Q, Wickes, KFC and NHS24.
Michael provides our clients with financial budget sizing and brings our MI reporting to life. He’s also a key member of our Bid team and leads our award-winning team of Resource Planners. As Employee of the Year in 2017, he is recognised throughout Ascensos as the go-to guy for clients and colleagues alike.Connect
Head of Marketing & Communications
Fiona joined us in 2014 to build the Ascensos brand and spearhead our marketing activities. A CIM qualified digital marketer, she has 20 years of marketing and communications experience across various sectors.
A creative with a knack for data. Fiona has an appreciation that the best ideas and insights are often under a mound of data. She’s an enthusiastic advocate of our workplace culture and the ethos that underpins who we are.
Currently, Fiona leads our corporate marketing activities alongside our internal colleague communications. Like the rest of the Leadership team, she is driven to create a colleague experience aligned to our company vision and values to ensure our company culture translates into a vibrant place to work.Connect
Ascensos Mascot, Recognition VP & Chief Fundraiser
This is Archie. You may recognise this pup. Since day dot, he’s been part of #theAteam, when our founders invited him to become our company mascot.
As a friendly, bold, young Scottish pup, and an incredibly cute black Labrador, Archie did a fantastic job representing our company values back in 2013. He was exceptionally energetic, loyal to the core, agile and very, very tenacious. He would jump through hoops to achieve his goals – and as a young company focused on doing things differently – we identified with his zest for life.
Six years later, Archie has grown with us, and although not such a young pup now, he still reminds us of our roots and continues to be an ambassador for Ascensos.
Archie loves his job, he cheers up his colleagues with a wag of his tail when he visits, and he’s just been promoted to Recognition VP and Chief Fundraiser!