As the group prepares for a busy 2020, Crossword Cybersecurity has appointed Robert Coles as the Chair of its consulting subsidiary. A former KPMG Partner, Coles brings three decades of experience to the role, having previously headed cyber-security efforts across a number of major brands.
Having exploded onto the corporate agenda in the last decade, as digital transformation efforts have increasingly left organisations vulnerable to hackers, cybercrime will remain a large-scale concern for years to come. According to an Accenture report in collaboration with the World Economic Forum, between 2019 and 2023, approximately $5.2 trillion in global value will be at risk from cyber-attacks, creating an on-going challenge for corporations and investors alike.
Crossword Cybersecurity is a professional services firm which focuses on the development and commercialisation of research-based cyber-security software, and cyber-security consulting. The group’s specialist cyber security product development and software engineering teams work with its university partners to develop the research concept into a fully-fledged commercial product that it will then take to market. With demand for cyber-security consulting set to continue booming in 2020, the firm has significantly strengthened its leadership team with the appointment of a new Non-Executive Chair to its consulting subsidiary.
Crossword’s advisory subsidiary, Crossword Consulting, has welcomed Robert Coles, following a 30-year career in information security consulting. Coles initially worked at Big Four firm KPMG, specialising in information security before being made Partner in 2000. He ended a 14-year spell with the company in 2003 to join Royal Bank of Scotland as Head of Consultancy, Governance, Incident & Threat. Following a succession of similar roles at Merrill Lynch, Bank of America, National Grid, GlaxoSmithKline and NHS Digital, Coles became a Director at Cumberland House Consulting in 2018 – a role he will retain alongside his responsibilities at Crossword.
Commenting on Coles’ appointment, Tom Ilube, CEO of Crossword Cybersecurity said, “With Robert on board, alongside our current Executive team, we have the right people in place to scale up in 2020. Robert will bring his consulting experience, as Lead Partner at KPMG, to our consulting business as Chair. I am delighted to have two such powerful leaders join our team.”
The appointment comes as London-based Crossword Cybersecurity seeks to expand a number of its other offerings. Sean Arrowsmith has joined as Group Sales Director, while Jake Holloway has taken on the role of Chief Product Officer. Ilube noted that with the duo on-board, Crossword has “the right people in place to scale up in 2020.”