A former Scottish Enterprise (SE) head of energy has been appointed to lead the economic development quango as chief executive.
Adrian Gillespie, currently chief commercial officer at Strathclyde University, starts his new job on September 1.
He previously spent 16 years at SE, where he held leadership positions in the technology and energy sectors, before becoming managing director leading SE’s support for high growth companies, innovation, entrepreneurship and infrastructure development.
SE chairman Lord Smith of Kelvin said: “We are delighted to welcome Adrian as our new chief executive.
“Adrian has extensive knowledge in economic development which, coupled with his leadership abilities and recent experience at the University of Strathclyde, will bring a strong mix of skills and fresh perspective at a critical point in Scotland’s economic recovery.”
Economy Secretary Kate Forbes said: “This is a crucial time for business, trade and investment in Scotland and I look forward to working with Adrian, and leaders from across our business community, to push forward with an ambitious agenda of recovery and economic transformation.
“By working together and galvanising the expertise and ingenuity of businesses, trade unions and workforces, we will be able to seize Scotland’s economic potential and deliver greater, greener and fairer prosperity.”
Mr Gillespie, a Glasgow University accountancy graduate, worked his way through a graduate management programme at Marks & Spencer to become a senior manager at the high street retailer before joining SE in August 2001.
He was SE’s senior director for energy and low carbon technologies from August 2009 to March 2013, taking up that role as part of a shake-up of the now-defunct network of intermediary technology institutes (ITIs).
During this period he led SE’s oil & gas and offshore renewables activities, attracting projects and investment from around the world.
In December 2015, Mr Gillespie was unveiled as one of the boardroom team at newly formed economic development partnership Opportunity North East.
Speaking of his new role as SE’s CEO, Mr Gillespie said: “I’m very much looking forward to re-joining the talented team at Scottish Enterprise, and to working closely with our partners in business, academia and government to support recovery, innovation and growth across the country.”
The three short-lived ITIs – Aberdeen-based ITI Energy, Dundee’s ITI Life Sciences and Glasgow’s ITI Techmedia – were launched in 2003 but integrated into the wider research, commercialisation and innovation operations of SE only six years later.