New Chairman for Social Investment Scotland

New Chairman for Social Investment Scotland

Leading funder to the third sector Social Investment Scotland (SIS) has appointed a new Chairman, Professor Nick Kuenssberg OBE.

Nick Kuenssberg takes up the chairmanship of SIS as the organisation embarks on the next stage of its development to promote social investment in Scotland and grow funds under management to meet the increasing financial demands of the third sector.

His first principal tasks are to refresh the board and then to help the executive finalise the organisation’s new five year strategy to be launched in spring this year.

With more than thirty years corporate experience, Prof. Kuenssberg is one of Scotland’s more distinguished and influential business leaders. His career has included international appointments in Europe and South America as well as major corporate roles in Scotland and board appointments at Standard Life, Bank of Scotland (West Board) and Scottish Power.

Since 1995 he has pursued a portfolio career including the positions of director at Scottish Legal Aid Board, deputy chairman at SEPA and chairman of the Institute of Directors Scotland, Glasgow School of Art, ScotlandIS, Scotland the Brand and QAA Scotland in addition to company roles including chairman of Iomart and currently mLED and Scott & Fyfe.  He is also an active business angel and mentor and an honorary professor at the University of Glasgow, having been a visiting professor at the Strathclyde Business School and an examiner at Aberdeen Business School.

Nick Kuenssberg replaces Alf Young, who chaired the board from 2010 to 2012.  During his tenure funds under management grew from £30 million to over £40 million with 180 investee organisations.

Speaking of his appointment, Prof Nick Kuenssberg said: “The role of Scotland’s third sector has changed significantly in recent years, playing a much more central part in the development of communities across the country. With the contraction in both grant capital and public funding, the role of social enterprise becomes increasingly important and should grow significantly.

“As the largest not for profit provider of business loans to the third sector in Scotland, SIS is well placed to not only help meet this demand, but also to develop new forms of funding appropriate to the third sector and attract more investment from the wider Scottish and UK investment community. I hope to be able to help SIS meet these challenges head on and develop its profile within the investment community.”    

Chief executive of Social Investment Scotland, Alastair Davis, said:  “On behalf of all of the team at SIS, I would like to welcome Professor Kuenssberg to our family.  The fact that a candidate of Nick’s stature and profile was attracted by this position is an encouraging sign that social investment is finally breaking through into mainstream investment circles.   With the experience that Nick brings through both his work in the corporate sector and his knowledge of the chairmanship role, his arrival will help to drive SIS forward and deliver the ambitious five year strategy which we’re currently developing.

Alastair Davis added: “On behalf of the board I would like to thank Alf for his hard work and dedication over the past two years, a period that has been testing but has seen the organisation make substantial progress.”