07 Nov SEQEL Partners marks 10 year anniversary with founders transition and appointment of industry leader.
SEQEL Partners is celebrating our 10 year Anniversary this month and is marking this major milestone with some significant changes. Don Jaine, the industry figurehead who founded SEQEL Partners with Mark Ashcroft in 2008, is retiring as a practicing Partner this month to concentrate on his roles as Board member of the company, and Kirsty Simpson, one of New Zealand’s top talent managers, is joining as a Partner from 30 October.
Kirsty brings two decades of high-level experience in search and executive recruitment to SEQEL, most recently from her role as Talent Manager with Air New Zealand. She has previously worked for top legal firms and specialist recruitment agencies, and holds qualifications from Monash University and Victoria University of Wellington.
Kirsty notes, “Being approached by SEQEL was very flattering as they are regarded as the preeminent search firm for board and senior appointments in New Zealand, and I am looking forward to effecting change in our industry through SEQEL. My fellow Partners Mark Ashcroft and James Sleigh share my energy and vision for search and together we can truly step-change the industry. I am conscious of the part I can play in bringing further women into directorships and senior leadership roles in the corporate sector, contributing to a more balanced and diverse landscape. I am also passionate about brand and social media and communicating in ways to which today’s audiences are responding.”
SEQEL Partner James Sleigh believes Kirsty is an invaluable addition to the firm. “Kirsty brings a younger, more contemporary perspective and has extensive experience in appointing senior executives and conducting leadership advisory work, most recently as the leader of the talent agenda for senior executives at Air New Zealand. We are very pleased to welcome her.
“Kirsty’s entry is one of many important changes that we have worked hard to implement. Since the establishment of the firm, we have grown in our capability, our international candidate reach, and our ability to attract top talent to NZ Inc. In the last few years we have successfully completed a number of significant CEO, executive and board appointments and achieved excellent outcomes. In recent years, one quarter of our placed executive candidates came from outside New Zealand, bringing different experience and broad capability to New Zealand. This unusually large proportion of ex-New Zealand candidates is a combination of talent returning to New Zealand and foreigners wanting to live and work in this market.
“With Don retiring as a Partner at the end of October, he leaves the day-to-day operations of a firm that has created a strong track record of results over the past 10 years and is known for its international candidate reach, its client advocacy, its long-term partnerships and its commitment to client success” notes SEQEL Partner Mark Ashcroft. “We have become a go-to firm for senior and difficult appointments, which is something of which we are very proud. Don’s contribution has been enormous and he will continue to lend his expertise as a director and advisor as the business evolves.”
In addition to the firm’s three Partners, SEQEL’s Associate team has grown to four full-time and one part-time staff, all with deep experience in executive search. The firm serves NZX-listed, privately owned, multinational, Australasian, and private equity-owned companies as well as co-operatives. SEQEL recently completed a major SOE appointment of the CEO of CityRail. Other significant appointments in the last year have included; Lyndal York as CFO of Fisher & Paykel Healthcare, Jo Avenell as CEO of Russell McVeagh, Rob Campbell as Chair of Sky City,, Jeanette Kehoe-Perkinson as Executive General Manager Human Resources at ASB, Rosanne Graham as CEO at Evolve Education, Elaine Campbell as Legal Counsel/Company Secretary at Chorus and Scott St John as Director at Mercury.