Mercia Technologies PLC, a Midland-based leader in the funding and commercialisation of technology businesses in the UK, announces that Will Whitehorn, the former President of Virgin Galactic, has joined user-generated content platform Crowd Reactive as Chairman. The appointment follows a second tranche investment by Mercia totalling £500,000.
Mr Whitehorn, who has over 30 years of experience in brand development, media and communication, will assist the leadership team with the direction and strategy of the business as it evolves from an early stage start-up to a globally established brand. He will be working in particular with EventsTag, a browser-based live display platform that is used by existing clients including O2, Nike and Coca Cola.
Mr Whitehorn will now work closely with Mercia's Investment Director Rob Johnson, as well as Crowd Reactive's Founder and CEO Dan Strang, to build awareness of the business as it continues to expand into Europe, Asia and the Americas.
Formerly spokesperson for Sir Richard Branson, Mr Whitehorn has a wealth of experience in building and developing young businesses into successful brands. During his 25 years at Virgin Management, he coordinated the branding, marketing, PR and Corporate Affairs across Virgin's Investments and businesses.
He now acts as Chairman of Speed Communications, and is non-executive director of a number of companies, including Stagecoach Group PLC and Purplebricks.com. Alongside this, he is also a fellow of the Royal Aeronautical Society, The Marketing Society and he is also Vice President of the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport.
Commenting on the new appointment, Rob Johnson said:
"I have worked with Dan on Crowd Reactive from its foundation and it's wonderful to see one of Mercia's 'emerging stars' attract such an industry heavyweight as Will Whitehorn. Will's time at Virgin, as well as his close partnership with Sir Richard Branson, means that he will be able to contribute valuable experience and expertise as the team continue the international expansion of their business."
Dan Strang, CEO of Crowd Reactive, said:
"I am proud to welcome Will Whitehorn to chair the Crowd Reactive Board. Will worked at the forefront of one of the world's most exciting and powerful brands, and we are incredibly excited that someone with his wealth of experience has joined our team. He will be a huge asset to EventsTag in our quest to take our rapidly growing company to the next level."
Will Whitehorn commented:
"I am delighted to be joining such an ambitious and innovative team. The calibre of brands already using EventsTag for their global campaign is testament to the vision and expertise of Crowd Reactive. Having worked for a globally recognised brand for many years, I know only too well how important it is to differentiate a business within competitive markets. EventsTag is uniquely placed to offer that opportunity."