AIM Altitude, based in Bournemouth, designs, engineers, manufactures, certifies, installs and maintains cabin interiors for the world’s major airlines on Airbus and Boeing as well as military aircraft.
Mark Edwards, AIM’s CEO, and Directorbank’s Simon Thomas have known each other for a number of years and together appointed a CFO when AIM underwent its initial MBO in 2010 with backing from LDC. Following successive transactions to Towerbrook and then to AVIC, a Chinese state owned enterprise, in 2016, a new CFO was required.
Brief & process
Mark approached Simon to recruit a commercial-oriented CFO to assist him in overseeing the Finance, IT and Admin functions and, with the additional support of the operations and commercial teams, to help drive the business forward. The ideal candidate required the necessary expertise to handle the complexity of a foreign owned business with a track record in negotiating large contracts with major structural manufacturers and flag carriers. An aerospace background was deemed beneficial, but not essential, with greater importance placed on experience in multi-site and international contract manufacturing.
Upon instruction and following a site visit to Bournemouth to view the new Head Office facilities and meet senior team members, Simon and Tom Warrack (lead researcher on the assignment) identified a list of target companies to map and approach alongside strong individuals from the Directorbank network. Within four weeks, over 70 companies had been mapped and more than 110 candidate profiles assessed (including advertised response to ensure all suitable candidates in the market were considered). Six candidates were presented for Client interview with Mark Stoddart successfully appointed to the role within the 12 week timeline agreed at the outset of the assignment.
Mark is a commercial Finance Director with a wealth of operational and business partnering experience in multi-site manufacturing and engineering. His career history includes Ricardo plc, a global engineering consultancy business mainly servicing the automotive, rail and energy sectors, Ultra Electronics (supplying electronic equipment to the aerospace and defence markets), GKN Aerospace and GE Power Conversion.