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Our Leadership

First and foremost we know that our work is about people. Projects and contracts, no matter how straightforward, will only succeed if our teams form successful partnerships with our customers and suppliers.

Non-Executive Directors

David Fison

Non Executive Chair

David Fison

David graduated from Cambridge in 1973 and has spent all of his executive career in infrastructure, initially as a civil engineer before broadening his skills to encompass building, M&E, specialist contracting etc. He is a Fellow of the Institution of Civil Engineers.

Having been CEO of both Geoffrey Osborne Ltd and Skanska UK Plc, David fully understands that low margin businesses require tight control of risks whilst creating the environment to get the best from all those involved.

As Chairman of the Octavius Board, David brings with him significant experience of other Non-Executive roles including the Olympic Delivery Authority, London City Airport and Covent Garden Market Authority. He is also a Governor of the University of Arts, London (UAL).

Richard Sanders

Sullivan Street Founding Partner

Richard Sanders

Richard was appointed to the Board in September 2021 as a Non-Executive Director representing the interests of our owners Sullivan Street Partners (SSP). 

Richard’s aim is to support the board in aligning the business behind a common goal and to be a good owner of a good business.

Richard read Physics at Oxford and Manufacturing and Management at Cambridge followed by 7 years strategy experience with Bain and Burlington and 13 years in operational roles before co-founding SSP in 2010 with Layton Tamberlin.

Layton Tamberlin

Sullivan Street Founding Partner

Layton Tamberlin

Layton was appointed to the Board in September 2021 as a Non-Executive Director. Layton believes that the pursuit of long-term investment returns is compatible with responsible stewardship of business and responsible corporate citizenship.

In the last 17 years, he has invested in, and served as a Director for, companies with values of £1m to £5bn. Layton read Mathematics and Philosophy at Oxford, and brings his analytical, logical and principled approach to the Octavius board.


Sullivan Street Managing Partner

Zeina Bain

Zeina was appointed to the board in October 2022 as a Non-Executive Director. She champions proactive partnerships with management and bringing best practices to bear across multiple sectors.

Zeina has over 20 years’ experience in private equity, leading carve-outs, take privates and mergers at the Carlyle Group’s European buyout fund and executing structured investments at ICG across the UK, Nordics and the Benelux. She read Philosophy, Politics and Economics at Lincoln College, Oxford.

Executive Directors


Chief Executive

John Dowsett

John was appointed Chief Executive Officer of Octavius in September 2021 when Sullivan Street Partners acquired the business from the Geoffrey Osborne Group.

He joined Geoffrey Osborne Limited as a Graduate Engineer in 1996 where he worked on various rail schemes, becoming a Chartered Civil Engineer in 2001. John led many of the company’s collaborative frameworks with Network Rail; he became Delivery Director in 2010. He was appointed Managing Director of the Infrastructure Business in 2015, with responsibility for all the Group’s Rail and Highways activities.


Chief Financial Officer

Philip Moses

Phil is an experienced finance director with a successful track record of increasing the enterprise value of complex organisations, both plc and PE, through professional leadership of the finance function combined with strong commercial instincts and a deep understanding of how businesses make money.

A skilled negotiator with proven deal capabilities, Phil has over 20 years’ experience at CFO level, with telecom and infrastructure companies including BT, UK towers company Arqiva, and London City Airport. Prior to joining Octavius in January 2022, his most recent role was as CFO of pan-African fibre and data centre provider Liquid Telecom. He is a non-executive director of Bigblu Broadband plc, an international satellite and fixed wireless broadband provider.


Managing Director, Rail

Matt Smith

Prior to becoming Managing Director, Rail, Matt was Octavius’ Operations Director. Matt has over 28 years’ experience in the infrastructure sector, having joined Octavius’ predecessor, Geoffrey Osborne, as a Civil Engineering graduate in 1994 following his graduation from the University of Birmingham with a Masters in Construction Management.

Throughout his career Matt has driven our collaborative approach with customers and suppliers, and leads our commitment to ISO44001 Collaborative Business Relationships. 

Matt has worked across all aspect and levels of Project Delivery and is accountable for the safe delivery of all operations within the business. He has a real passion for delivering a quality product with a focus on ensuring value is created throughout the project life cycle.


Managing Director, Highways

Gavin Pritchard

Prior to becoming Managing Director for Highways and Regional Civil Engineering, Gavin was Octavius’ Commercial Director. Gavin has worked in infrastructure for 30 years, both in the UK and overseas.

A Quantity Surveyor by training he learned his trade working for Geoffrey Osborne during the 1990’s, joining as a Trainee Quantity Survey and progressing to become Commercial Manager of its largest framework. 

He held senior commercial and project leadership roles in large organisations such as Balfour Beatty, Alstom Power Generation and ABB Transmission & Distribution before returning “home” in 2020 to become Commercial and Supply Chain Director of Octavius Infrastructure.


Pre-Delivery Director

Mike Purdue

Born in Sydney, Australia, Mike graduated as a Civil Engineer in 1983. After working for the State Roads Authority across New South Wales, he moved to the UK and joined Costain in 1988, working across a number of major projects.

He joined Geoffrey Osborne as a Senior Estimator in 1997; winning the company’s first place on a Network Rail framework in 2001 and launching the rail business which has been going strong ever since. Mike became Rail Director in 2005 and played a key role in the creation of the Infrastructure business in 2013 when the Rail and Highways sectors came together.

Mike is currently Pre-Delivery Director for Octavius, responsible for achieving our planned sales growth, ensuring we are successful in securing profitable and sustainable work through business development, pre-qualification and tendering for both individual projects and long-term frameworks with our highways and rail infrastructure customers.

Cat Cliffe

Director of People and Sustainability

Catriona Cliffe

Cat joined Octavius in October 2021. As Director of People & Sustainability, she is responsible for delivering outcomes that benefit people and places for the business, our customers and in the wider community.

Prior to joining Octavius, Cat has worked on a wide range of infrastructure projects including the Lower Thames Crossing, M25 and Victoria Station Upgrade, focussing on people, environmental and societal outcomes during the development and delivery phases.  She is driven to ensure that sustainability principles are at the heart of decision-making and are not a ‘bolt-on’ to any business model.

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