UK Government

Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (National): Mark Prisk announces reappointments to Industrial Development Advisory Board

Press Release   •   Feb 01, 2011 11:33 GMT

Business Minister Mark Prisk today endorsed the reappointment of Professor Chris Higson and Charles Lochrane to the Industrial Development Advisory Board (IDAB).

IDAB provides independent advice to the Government on large investment decisions and public investments in major projects in England. The expertise of IDAB covers industry, banking, accountancy and finance.

Nigel Brooksby and Andrew Shilston were also appointed to the Board in May last year.

Business Minister Mark Prisk said:

“IDAB plays a vital role in helping Government make the right choices on large investment decisions. The knowledge and expertise of Chris Higson and Charles Lochrane are valuable assets to the Board.

“The Board helps the Government in its bid to promote growth by ensuring that taxpayers’ money is spent in the correct way. The Board has always been clear that successful projects should create jobs that are highly skilled and help to boost deprived local economies.

“I look forward to working with them and the rest of the Board to make sure that public investments in industrial projects have the best possible impact.”

IDAB provides advice on large investment decisions, particularly applications to the Grant for Business Investment (GBI) scheme.

With the closure of the Regional Development Agencies (RDAs), applications to the GBI scheme delivered by the RDAs will be closed to new applications from February 1. The Department for Business, Innovation & Skills will consider large GBI cases (applications for over £2 million) on an exceptional basis only. Firms with good projects may be eligible to compete for funding from the £1.4bn Regional Growth Fund.

Notes to editors

1. IDAB is a statutory body set up under Section 10 of the Industrial Development Act 1982 to advise the Secretary of State on the exercise of his powers under Sections 7 and 8 of that Act, which cover the provision of selective financial assistance to industry.

2. All IDAB appointments are part-time and unpaid.

3. For more information on the Board, including current membership, please visit

4. The Grant for Business Investment scheme is a national scheme providing assistance on a selective basis to support sustainable investment and job creation projects in the assisted areas of England. For all but the largest cases, the scheme is delivered by the Regional Development Agencies. Changes to the scheme were published in the Local Growth White Paper on 28 October 2010.

5 BIS’ online newsroom contains the latest press notices, speeches, as well as video and images for download. It also features an up to date list of BIS press office contacts. for more information.

Nigel Brooksby:

Nigel Brooksby is the Non Executive Chairman of Prism Pharma. Limited and Chair of the Primary Care Cardiovascular Society. Prior to this, Nigel was Chairman & Managing Director of Sanofi-aventis UK and had overall responsibility for the group's activities within the UK. Nigel was also a member of the sanofi aventis European Management Committee. He has worked in the USA and UK for Pfizer. 

He is a Vice President of the French Chamber of Commerce and has just completed a term of Office as the Chairman of the European Pharmaceutical Group. He is the Chairman of the Pharmaceutical Directors Club and is also a member of the CBI President's Committee. Nigel was made a Lifetime Honorary Member of the ABPI in April 2010 in recognition of his service to the Life Sciences and his term of Office as President.

Chris Higson:

Chris Higson is a professor in accounting at London Business School, where he was the chair of the accounting group for some years. He holds degrees in philosophy and economics, and a doctorate in finance from London Business School. He qualified as a chartered accountant in London with what is now Deloitte. He specialises in financial performance and valuation, acquisitions, taxation, and governance and regulation. He is a regular commentator on these subjects on television, radio and in the international press, and has advised many leading financial and industrial companies. 

Chris has written well over a hundred academic papers, books, and cases. His recent thinking on the value of information to organisations is described in Valuing Information as an Asset, 2010. Much of his recent work examines financial performance around the business cycle and in recession.

Charles Lochrane:

Charles Lochrane is a Fellow of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors and has been a partner for 26 years and a proprietary partner for 20 years at Strutt & Parker, a large firm of Chartered Surveyors. In this role Charles has provided advice to institutional, corporate and private investors on the acquisition, asset management, development and disposal of commercial real estate investments.

Andrew Shilston:

Andrew Shilston has been the chief financial officer of Rolls Royce plc since 2003. Prior to that, he was the CFO of Enterprise Oil for eight years. He has also acted as a non-executive at Cairn Energy and AEA Technology. At Rolls he has oversight of the £1 billion investment budget, covering R&D as well as capital projects.

6. BIS' online newsroom contains the latest press notices, speeches, as well as video and images for download. It also features an up to date list of BIS press office contacts. See for more information.


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