HOVIP - Heads of the Valleys Innovation Programme

Heads of the Valleys Innovation Programme

delivered by business people for business people


"The key things I have learnt are a re-assessment of my customer base and re-direction of my effort. It is well worth attending this Creativity and Innovation workshop."

Phil Corke, MD Design & Manufacture Ltd


  1. Phil Burkhard, Programme Manager

    Phil has over 20 years organisational improvement, innovation and business development experience gained in Welsh SMEs and the public sector, UK blue chips, 3M and overseas.

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    This has included: leading the 1996 UK Utility Industry Team of the Year at Thames Water and running an Abercynon-based SME, delivering innovation services, that was nominated for Wales Innovative Company of 2003.
    Phil has also led the Merthyr Tydfil College team that came runner-up in the innovation category of the 2006 National Fforwm Awards , runner-up in the category to ‘plug skills gaps in industry’ in the 2007 Awards and runner-up in the ‘effective partnership working’ category of the 2008 Awards. Phil was also a finalist in the 2008 Leading Wales Awards.
    Phil is an Assessor for the Wales Quality Award and De Bono trained Creative Thinking Facilitator with a passion for providing practical support. This passion extends to supporting the Ospreys, Reading and Chelsea!

  2. Wendy Locke, Event Management

    Wendy has been running her business, Virtual Assistance, since November 2005 following over 20 years' experience as an Executive Assistant in both the private and public sectors.

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    Virtual Assistance can be your partner in business, taking care of all those time consuming tasks you'd love to get a PA to do for you! – leaving you free to concentrate on and develop your business. Rates are affordable and support can be utilised only when needed.
    Give Wendy a call to discuss support for your business:
    M: 07859 077494
    E: wsl@virtualassistance.org.uk
    W: www.virtualassistance.org.uk

  3. Helen Murdoch, Marketing Consultant

    Helen is the founder and managing director of H M Marketing Ltd, a South Wales-based marketing and communications consultancy and a partner with leading business management consultancy MA Consulting International.

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    Helen has a passion for marketing and focuses on helping smaller businesses get better results. She identifies simple yet powerful ideas for her clients to help them be one in a million instead of one of a million!
    Contact Helen on:
    T: 01656 773645
    E: helen@hmmarketing.co.uk
    W: www.hmmarketing.co.uk

  4. Jeff Harris, Business Recruitment Consultant

    In addition to roles as a Maths Teacher in his old school in Abersychan and as a Mortgage Advisor with Total Mortgages Cwmbran and some time spent touring New Zealand, Jeff has extensive experience in Industry.

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    This has included Works Metallurgist with Saunders Valve Co. Ltd, Metallurgist / Quality Manager with Lucy Castings in Witney Oxon and Shift Manager at St. Gobain's Risca foundry.
    More recently Jeff was the SE Wales Manager for the delivery of the Objective 1 pan-Wales Additional Resource Providers Project. Jeff joined the HOVIP team in the latter role and provides invaluable support to help recruit businesses to the HOVIP programme.
    Contact Jeff on:
    M: 07973 760 230 or
    E: avgd40@dsl.pipex.com

  5. Mike Warren, Facilitator and Business Advisor

    Mike works internationally in both public and private sectors and has a track record in strategy and innovation that has helped to increase sales revenue for firms in Wales by over £3.0 million.

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    He is a registered business trainer with the Chartered Institute of Management and has particular strengths in manufacturing, technology and project management as well as strong international marketing and commercial skills from senior management positions at BOC, Days Healthcare, Rehau, Smiths Industries and Xerox. In addition Mike is a member of the Institute of Export.
    Mike runs a number of management workshops including the HOVIP taster session on Creativity and Innovation.
    Contact Mike on:
    M:07879 884167
    E: Mike@GreyMatterUK.com.
    W: www.GreyMatterUK.com

  6. Sadie Fentham, Facilitator and Business Advisor

    Virtual support is a growing trend for small to large business users. The benefits are extensive – cost effective and flexible, allowing the user to utilise different skill sets to match their needs as and when required.

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    Sadie set up Simply Efficient in 2006 with over sixteen years experience as an executive PA allowing her to use her knowledge  in helping others grow their business.
    Contact Sadie on:
    M: 07590 833503 or
    E: sadie@simplyefficient.co.uk

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Heads of the Valleys Innovation Programme (HOVIP) aims to increase the capacity for innovation in businesses in the region. Phase 1 was KEF ESF Funded and hosted by Merthyr Tydfil College. HOVIP2 and HOVIP3 is supported by the Welsh Assembly Government HoV Regeneration initiative with the 5 HoV local authorities and is hosted by Merthyr Tydfil County Borough Council.

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