Business insight Leadership and Governance

  • Graham Holden

    Graham Holden

    Non-Executive Chairman

    Graham Holden was appointed Non-Executive Chairman for KCOM on 1 April 2014. He joined the Board as a Non-Executive Director in November 2007. Graham is a Chartered Accountant and a graduate of the Harvard Advanced Management Programme. He was Chief Executive of Marshalls plc until October previously, serving as Group Financial Director from 1992 until 2001. He is a Visiting Fellow in the School of Management at Cranfield University.

    Board Committees 

    R N

  • Jane Aikman

    Jane Aikman

    Chief Financial Officer

    Jane Aikman was appointed as Chief Financial Officer on 17 October 2016. She was previously Chief Financial Officer and Chief Operating Officer for Phoenix IT Group PLC and also held CFO positions at Infinis plc, Wilson Bowden plc, Pressac and Asia Pulp. Jane was an internal audit manager and qualified as a Chartered Accountant with Ernst & Young. With effect from 31 July 2017 she will be appointed as a Non-Executive Director of Morgan Advanced Materials plc.

  • Liz Barber

    Liz Barber

    Non-Executive Director

    Liz Barber joined the Board in 2015. She is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales, qualifying with Ernst & Young and promoted to Partner in 2001. Liz was Head of Audit for the North of England from 2006 to 2010 and then joined Kelda Group as Group Director of Finance Regulation and Markets. She is a non-executive member of the Board Council for Leeds University, member of the Prince of Wales Accounting for Sustainability Group and Steering Group member of the Two Percent Club.

    Board Committees 

    A R N

  • Patrick De Smedt

    Patrick De Smedt

    Senior Independent Non-Executive Director

    Patrick De Smedt joined the Board in 2016. He will become Senior Independent Director for the Group from the AGM on 22 July. He held a number of senior positions in Microsoft between 1983 and 2006. During this time he founded the Benelux subsidiaries, led the development of its Western European business and served as Chairman of Microsoft for Europe, Middle East and Africa. He is currently a Non‐Executive Director at Victrex plc and is Senior Independent Director at Morgan Sindall Group plc and PageGroup plc.

    Board Committees 

    A R N

  • Bill Halbert

    Bill Halbert

    Chief Executive

    Bill Halbert joined the Board as a Non-Executive Director in September 2006 before stepping up to become Executive Chairman in July 2009 and was then appointed Chief Executive Officer on 1 April 2014. He has worked in the information technology industry for over 40 years and has a wealth of experience and strategic insight. He founded and was the CEO for 13 years for Syntegra, BT’s global consultancy and systems integration subsidiary. Bill’s other directorships include Excelsys Ltd, Jade Solutions Limited and Tacit Connexions Ltd.

  • Peter Smith

    Peter Smith

    Non-Executive Director

    Peter Smith joined the Board in 2015. He has worked for LEK Consulting LLP for 27 years and is a member of LEK's Global Leadership Team. Prior to joining LEK, Peter worked for Schlumberger Wireline in the Middle East for seven years as a field engineer and line manager in the oil industry.

    Board Committees 

    A R N

  • Kathy Smith

    Kathy Smith

    Company Secretary

    Kathy took on the role of Company Secretary in 2010. She is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales, qualifying with Deloitte. Kathy joined as Head of Internal Audit and now leads our risk and governance teams alongside her company secretary role. Kathy is the Secretary for all of the Board committees.

Board committees

The following are all Committees of the Board, and as such have the delegated authority of the Board as set out in their relevant Terms of Reference. Committee Meetings are always minuted, and a Committee update is provided to the Board after each meeting.

Audit Committee Remuneration Committee Nomination Committee
Liz Barber (Chair) Peter Smith (Chairman)   Graham Holden (Chairman)
Patrick De Smedt  Liz Barber Liz Barber
Peter Smith Patrick De Smedt Patrick De Smedt
  Graham Holden Peter Smith
Other Attendees, By Invitation
Graham Holden Bill Halbert Bill Halbert
Bill Halbert Kathy Smith Kathy Smith
Kathy Smith    
External Auditors    


Corporate Governance

KCOM is committed to high standards of corporate governance and responsiveness to stakeholder expectations. We take full account of the principles of good governance, and in particular the UK Corporate Governance Code. We report as fully and transparently as possible each year in our report and accounts on our methods of corporate governance and on whether we have complied with the UK Corporate Governance Code. We regularly review published guidance regarding corporate governance, and wherever possible, we aim to follow that best practice.