Ex-Mazars boss Chris Darlington takes on marketing role at business advisors WestBridge Group

A former partner within a number of top 10 accounting firms has joined the board of business advisors WestBridge Group.

Chris Darlington was a partner at Mazars for five years, opening and managing the Leicester office in Meridian Business Park and growing it to 50 staff.

Prior to that he was the managing partner of the RSM Tenon offices in Leicester and then Grove Park, and headed up the BDO office in the city.

After leaving Mazars three years ago he set up his own business and also became commercial director of both Costock brand and events agency Champions (UK) Plc and Leicester civil engineering specialist Nicholls Colton.

He has now been appointed as group marketing director at Westbridge Group, also based in Meridian Business Park, which offers specialist tax advice to businesses and business owners, as well as independent administration, consultancy, and trustee services for Small Self-Administered Pension Schemes.

He is working with Simple Marketing Consultancy (SMC) to lead the firm’s marketing strategy.

SMC is jointly run by Bev Cook – who was previously the head of marketing for Tenon and has worked for BDO and Grant Thornton – and her son and business partner Elliot Cook.

Mr Darlington said: “I am delighted to be joining the group during a very exciting time in its development.

“We have some ambitious plans for growth and our main goal will be to ensure we implement a focused and co-ordinated programme of marketing activity that ensures our audiences understand the benefits of the specialist advice we can offer to help clients protect their corporate and personal wealth.

“Having previously worked with Bev and Elliot, I’m confident that our combined skill sets will help to create an award winning firm that is renowned for the quality of its advisory solutions and service.”

WestBridge Group was established in 2016 as Obsidian, and rebranded in 2019. Its executive team includes Tom Moore, Martin Tilley, David Santaney, Lucas Harding-Cox and Rocky Leanders.

In 2020, the group acquired a book of small self-administered pension schemes from financial services provider James Hay and now employs a UK wide team of 40 people who operate under the WestBridge Tax and WestBridge SSAS brands.

Group director Tom Moore said: “There are significant advantages to be gained by going to market as a Group rather than separate brands, particularly as we add more new services.

“We recognise that the same market sectors can benefit from our solutions and Chris and SMC have previous experience of implementing highly effective marketing plans on a UK wide basis.”

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Tom PegdenLeicester Mercury business editor