Board of Directors

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Philip Bowman
Independent Chairman

Philip was appointed Chair of Sky in September 2019. Philip is a distinguished businessman who has led several major global companies and served on the board of a significant number of public and private companies. Philip brings knowledge of the media sector, including having served on the board of Sky UK for ten years. Other roles include Group Finance Director of Bass, CEO of Bass Retail, CEO of Allied Domecq, CEO of Scottish Power, CEO of Smiths Group, senior non-executive director of Burberry, Chairman of Liberty, Chairman of Coral Eurobet, Chairman of Miller Group, and non-executive director of Scottish & Newcastle. He currently sits on the boards of two other listed companies, Kathmandu and Ferrovial SA. Philip has a degree with honours in Natural Sciences (University of Cambridge) and Master in Natural Sciences (University of Cambridge).

He is also a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of England and Wales.

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Joan Withers
Independent Director

Joan was appointed to the board in September 2019. She brings a wealth of experience spanning a 25-year career in the media industry, including CEO positions at Fairfax and the Radio Network as well as being the former Chair of TVNZ. Joan’s depth of governance experience includes her current roles as Chair of The Warehouse Group, a director of ANZ NZ, and previously Chair of Auckland International Airport and Mercury NZ Ltd. Joan is a Trustee of the Louise Perkins Foundation, and is Chair of a steering committee working to increase the percentage of South Auckland Maori and Pacific Island students taking up roles in the health sector. She holds a Masters Degree in Business Administration from the University of Auckland. In 2015 Joan was named Supreme Winner in the Women of Influence Awards and was named as Chairperson of the Year in the Deloitte Top 200 Management Awards.

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Keith Smith
Independent Director

Keith was appointed to the board in April 2020. He has a long-standing record of leadership as a director and advisor to companies in a diverse range of industries, including the energy sector, rural services, printing, media and exporting. Keith is Chair of listed company Goodman (NZ) Limited (the Manager of Goodman Property Trust), Deputy Chair of The Warehouse Group Limited, and is a director of Mercury NZ Ltd and several other private companies. He is a past President of the Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand.

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Derek Handley
Independent Director

Derek was appointed to the board in September 2013. He is a New Zealand-based entrepreneur and founding General Partner at Aera VC, a global venture capital investor backing deep-technology start-ups tackling the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals across the future of climate, carbon, food, health, work and learning. For the last ten years, while based in New York  Derek co-created companies and platforms delivering social impact and environmental transformation. He co-founded the sustainability alliance, 'The B Team' with Sir Richard Branson and helped build NY-based start-up studio 'Human Ventures'. Previously Derek was named in the 'Silicon Alley 100' most influential technology people in New York. He is Adjunct Professor at AUT University in Auckland, was a formative member of the Air New Zealand Sustainability Advisory Panel, and is an aspiring civilian astronaut with Virgin Galactic. 

Derek is also created the Aera Foundation, a charitable studio advancing new models that fuse social and financial goals, including ‘Wiser', a platform helping people ask better questions to develop self-knowledge and purpose in their lives and the host of an online conversation and podcast series, 'Wiser Conversations'. 

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Mike Darcey
Independent Director

With an extensive track record of strategy and delivery across television, publishing and technology, Mike was appointed to the board in September 2017. A New Zealander, he has lived and worked in the UK since 1989. Fifteen of those years were spent at Sky UK, initially as the Director of Strategy, then six years as Chief Operating Officer. He played a prominent role in most of Sky UK's major strategic decisions and its major commercial and regulatory dealings during this period. From 2013 to 2015 Mike was CEO of News UK. Since 2015, Mike has had a series of non-executive roles and these currently include Chairman of M247 (a global connectivity and cloud services provider), Chairman of British Gymnastics, and director of Arqiva (the UK’s main independent provider of television broadcast infrastructure). He also provides strategic consulting services in the media sector.

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Geraldine McBride
Independent Director

Geraldine was appointed to the board in September 2013. A renowned Enterprise Business Technology and AI thought leader with a science background, Geraldine’s global career spans 30 years, with senior executive roles in IBM, Dell and SAP. Her most recent roles were President & CEO of SAP North America and SAP Asia Pacific Japan. Geraldine is a Director of National Australia Bank, and Fisher and Paykel Healthcare. She is also CEO & Director of MyWave.AI, a market leading Enterprise AI company focused on Intelligent Personalisation by putting the customer at the centre of business.