Global Head of Entrepreneurial Resourcing


Corporate venturing arm of multinational media conglomerate

Global Head of Entrepreneurial Resourcing

Delivery of talent strategies that support international growth, acquisition and corporate venturing activity

The Background

Intramezzo’s client in this case study is the corporate venturing arm of a multinational group of media and e-commerce platforms.

The organisation had started out as a newspaper publisher in the early 1900s but significant expansion, driven by a highly acquisitive growth strategy, has seen the company develop into one of the world’s largest media groups with revenues of over £1bn and a major presence in the BRIC regions.

The group’s business model is to identify emerging markets that present above-average growth opportunities, where a strong market position can be sustained.

In order to support and drive this highly-agile model and its venturing activities, an exceptional candidate was required to join the main board and bring entrepreneurial flair to the acquisition and management of talent across the organisation, worldwide.

Under the title of Global Head of Entrepreneurial Resourcing and reporting to the CEO, this appointment would work closely with the Group’s most senior executives in the development and implementation of talent strategies that would galvanize commercial performance, delivering ongoing growth and share/stakeholder value.

Prior to Intramezzo’s engagement, the organisation had been trying, without success, to make this appointment for three years – working with several major headhunting companies in the process. With these avenues now exhausted, Intramezzo accepted this challenging international search – one which would undoubtedly prove a true test of our reach and methodologies.

The Challenge

The group is an exciting organisation at a compelling stage in its growth trajectory, but it also bears an intriguing duality: being both a well-established, major multi-national and, simultaneously, a highly entrepreneurial and dynamic business.

The role, therefore, demanded an individual whose own background, attitude and experience mirrored this rare dichotomy; combined with the capability to work both autonomously and collaboratively within a fast-paced environment.

Furthermore, with a remit that would span many culturally diverse group businesses, the Global Head of Entrepreneurial Resourcing would need to possess considerable international experience and be comfortable with multiple country responsibility.

The task for Intramezzo was to deploy a global search and find a world-class candidate who not only met this description but who would also demonstrate astute strategic and commercial acumen together with a track record of talent acquisition, management and retention at the highest level.

What we did

The first step was for Intramezzo to draw up a detailed specification that would form the ‹working document› for all parties, covering strategic and operational requirements, role interdependencies, required competencies and high performance behaviours.

Once this had been agreed, the next stage was to define a strategy that would leave “no stone unturned” in an extensive international search. This project demanded a truly multi-faceted approach that comprised advertising across multiple locations; harnessing the talent, knowledge and connections within our own network; and deploying a bespoke search or “headhunt” exercise.

This latter activity saw our in-house research team set about investigating more than 100 companies within the key markets most relevant to our client – in this case eCommerce, eTail and transactional internet solutions.

After identifying, approaching and profiling some 125 individuals across 17 countries, Intramezzo submitted a shortlist of five exceptionally strong potential candidates, within eight weeks of project commencement.

From this selection of “best in world” talent, a rigorous interview process followed, culminating in the client appointing their preferred candidate – a member of the EMEA Leadership Team from eBay.

Key figures

  • 100+ companies investigated
  • 125 candidates identified & approached
  • 17 countries covered
  • 5 shortlisted candidates
  • 8 week delivery time

The successful candidate

With extensive experience of working among hi-tech/e-commerce specialists, the candidate was an ideal choice.

This individual had worked in software development, hardware manufacturing, e-tail, e-payments, online comparison shopping and online classifieds environments – and was both well-versed and wellconnected within our client’s key markets.

The chosen candidate had a highly impressive track record at eBay – having progressed steadily through a number of increasingly key leadership roles with an ever-widening international remit.

Responsible for supporting and facilitating the company›s acquisitive growth across multiple countries and brands, this individual successfully created and implemented global talent strategies that directly helped the business to expand and develop.

In synergy with the client’s own business model, the selected candidate identified with the notion of being an entrepreneur in a big company; having been heavily involved in the process of acquiring, integrating, growing and sometimes divesting companies in multinational environments.

With a career history that had such an international flavor, it was unsurprising that the travel requirements of this position presented no issue – in fact, on accepting the position, the candidate took the decision to relocate to The Netherlands in order to be better placed strategically to meet the demands of the new role.

Furthermore, this individual had an admiration for the client and felt very connected with the organisation’s focus on diverse, local and empowered teams, their ethos of being useful to their communities and the emphasis on customer, entrepreneurship and innovation.

In short, this was a true “fit” and we at Intramezzo are genuinely excited to see what the future holds for all parties. We wish them every success going forward.