Posted: Friday 4th August 2017 in Changemakers.
  • Chief Client Officer to drive strategic account growth

  • Head of Automotive to advise on disruptive strategies for OEMs and Dealer groups

Summit today announced the hiring of a team of industry experts that reads like a who’s who of prominent brands and agencies. Collectively the new team bring a unique mix of knowledge and expertise from multiple sectors including brands such as Mercedes Benz, ?What If!, Econsultancy, and Royal Mail, to help with Summit’s global expansion plans.

“As we begin to roll out our global expansion plans, European retail brands looking to cement their international footprint and optimise their digital transformation journey will play a significant role in our success,” said John Readman, Sales and Marketing Director at Summit. “Brands like Argos, Boohoo, Jaguar Land Rover, PSA Group and Reckitt Benckiser are already benefitting from Summit’s retail expertise. Forecaster, our marketing intelligence platform, has made them more profitable by understanding how, when and where to spend their marketing budget. We want to help more global retailers to predict the future using Forecaster, and not rely on gut instinct.”

Summit has gone on its own transformation journey since being founded in 2000 with the ambition of providing businesses with digital commerce services supported by a pioneering training and rehabilitation scheme for prisoners. It was only last year that the company was acquired by TCC Global, the loyalty marketing company, in a bid to strengthen TCC’s online retail and data analytics capabilities.

We caught up with the new team to find out what motivates them, where the industry is going, and what their professional superpowers are:




Mike Falconer joins Summit as their Chief Client Officer to drive strategic account growth. (Previously a Partner at ?What If!, and Client Services Director at Sapient)



Q. Which brands have you worked on previously?

PlayStation, Cadbury, Bacardi, Tesco, Seagram, Adidas, ING.


Q. Based on your area of business, what is the next big thing for online retailing?

I think social commerce will grow exponentially.  If you want to see a glimpse of the future for Europe and the US, take a look at where China is now.


Q. What is your most significant career accomplishment to date?

Building Europe’s first content agency for Omnicom.


Q. What is your professional superpower?

Thinking about things differently…


Q. What music do you listen to on your way in to work?
All sorts – currently Tom Grennan and Milky Chance.






Darren Ponsford joins Summit as their Head of Automotive Digital Transformation to advise on disruptive strategies for OEMs and Dealer groups to deliver omnichannel or ‘blended retail’ capabilities. (Previously Head of Data Development at JATO Dynamics, and Best Customer Experience Programme Manager at Mercedes Benz)



Q. What was the most recent marketing campaign that made an impact on you?

Sticking to an Automotive theme, the one campaign that has resonated with me is the Black Badge campaign for Rolls-Royce. The campaign, introduces the Black Badge version of its models that are faster/more powerful versions in the range and are aimed at a new, younger Rolls-Royce audience. The reason I have highlighted this campaign as being memorable is simply the edginess of the creative. It’s almost shocking – certainly not what you would expect from Rolls-Royce as it seeks to challenge established opinions and perceptions about the brand.


 Q. Who is the biggest influence of your career?

There are the three main influencers, who at different times, have each helped shape my thinking, my career and my approach to life too: David Heslop at Mazda UK, Alexei Orlov at WPP and Martin Leach at Magma Group – Each of them are exceptional businessmen, entrepreneurs and visionaries who possess a rich and unique mix of skills that have enabled them to achieve both personal and business success.  Martin unfortunately lost his battle with cancer in 2016 and will be sadly missed.


Q. Which online resources do you use for tips and information?

I regularly use a mix of information sources to ensure I have my finger on the pulse of the industry. LinkedIn is invaluable for keeping in touch with my network and understanding what’s going on. I also use various Auto-specific industry B2B websites in addition to the usual consumer car websites and the weekend motoring press websites too.






Elle Nadal joins Summit as their Head of Corporate Marketing (Previously Propositions Marketing Manager at Royal Mail and European Marketing Manager at Tradedoubler) 



 Q. Based on your area of the business, what is the next big thing for online retailing?

I think marketing technology is key for the success of online retailers to keep up with the pace of change and consumer behaviour. It will be interesting to see how the retail industry develops with the use of AI chatbots. At the moment it’s more a question of when, not if the integration will happen. In the future we’ll use one app to order our retail items like a camera or a dress, book a taxi, the next holiday, and check our latest transactions. Instead of talking to a person, an AI chatbot will become our most trusted advisor. It could change everything as we know it.


 Q. Which website ranks top of your favourites list? (It’s a great source of information and inspiration. I always leave the site feeling I have gained new ideas for how to approach something.)


 Q. What is your professional superpower?

Listening between the lines…


Q. What music do you listen to on your way in to work?
I have quite an eclectic taste in music. Spotify is great for finding artists and music you wouldn’t normally be exposed to. At the moment I’ve been listening to the Magic City Hippies, Goldie, and Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings.





Mark Thompson joins Summit as their Enterprise Sales Manager (Previously VP Business Development at Econsultancy)



 Q. What is your most significant career accomplishment to date?

I helped Econsultancy launch into the US, setting up their US creative services division.


Q. Based on your area of the business, what is the next big thing for online retailing?

Retailers are having to keep up with constantly changing consumer behaviour. It’s hard to (profitably) navigate that and prioritise what’s important to their customers.


Q. What music do you listen to on your way in to work?

A real mix depending on my mood. All time favourites include Oasis, The Killers, Ben Howard, Mr Scruff.


 Q. What is your professional superpower?

People and networking.






Emma Wardle joins Summit as their Digital Marketing Executive, to manage marketing activity for Three, Durex & Argos FS. (Previously Account Executive at Mercury Group) 



Q. How would you describe yourself in three words?

Positive, adventurous, caring.


Q. Tell us about a hobby of yours and how it started?

I regularly attend Body Attack which is a cardio exercise class. I do it to keep fit, and to catch up with friends before and after the class. I have also recently started yoga.


 Q. What is your professional superpower?

Enthusiastic and organised.


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