About Mike Harris

Mike Harris was born in 1949 in  Dudley, an industrial town in the heart of the UK. Having graduated in 1970 with a degree in chemistry from London University he spent the first part of his career in IT at Midland bank.

In 1986 he  joined , venture funded  technology company, Space-Time Systems, as part of their Series C fund raising. Space-Time was sold in 1988 and Harris returned to Midland Bank to become founding CEO of the world’s first major telephone bank Firstdirect, which is now a subsidiary of HSBC .

Firstdirect rapidly became known for its extraordinary service and customer loyalty -  a reputation it retains to this day

.Between 1991 and 1995 he was Chief Executive of UK Telco Mercury Communications (then the only competitor to BT)  where he created a new consumer business which was later sold to NTL (now Virgin Media) for £2.5bn. He was also Chairman of the start up mobile operator –One to One which was later sold to T-Mobile for $10bn.

In 1995 he moved on to the position of founding CEO of Prudential Banking plc and then the CEO of its successor, Egg – which he took from concept to a billion pound public company in just 2 years. Egg was the first major internet bank in the world and for several years had more internet customers than any other bank. It is still regarded as the most successful of the internet banking start-ups .

Following the Egg IPO Harris was credited by analysts, press and academic commentators with creating three one billion pound plus iconic brands- Firstdirect, Mercury and Egg. Having left Egg in 2005 he co-founded Garlik and became Executive Chairman. Garlik is now the UK’s leading supplier of software and  services which protect consumers  from online crime and identity fraud.  As at December 2011 , when it was sold to global data giant Experian, Garlik was operating in  the UK, the  US, Italy, Germany, Turkey and India..

Harris was Chair of Innovation at Royal Bank of Scotland  from 2005 until March 2009,  where he  supervised the establishment of  a group wide innovation programme.

Between 1995 and 2008 he was a regular speaker at the mid career MBA course at the Sloan School of management at MIT where he also supervised a number of student research projects.

He is  an experienced and highly rated  business speaker ,facilitator ,and mentor.

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