Group Managing Director & Group Technical Operations Director


Cawood Scientific, operating through six divisions across the UK, is the largest independent provider of analytical testing and sampling services for the land-based industries. In December 2010 management undertook an MBO supported by private equity and after a period of acquisition and strong organic growth, the Group has recently partnered with Waterland Private Equity to support the business through the next stage of growth.

Aligned to this next phase of development was a vital succession planning project to find and recruit a Group Managing Director and Group Technical & Operations Director as the existing leadership team (who led the original MBO) were transitioning to Non-Executive roles on the Board.

Eden Search & Select were invited to present their approach, network and track record to the Chair and outgoing Owners and were chosen as the right partner for the project.

“The Eden Search team were highly professional in their management of the recruitment process. Importantly, they spent time to gain a detailed understanding of the business which resulted in two excellent appointments.”

Lord Curry of Kirkharle, Chair of Cawood Scientific


Our approach

Given the mandate to find two experienced business leaders with different technical capabilities, it was also vitally important both searches targeted and engaged with candidates that not only had the experience and ambition for the roles but more importantly had the cultural appreciation of the industries Cawood served, the high growth ambition of the new owners and the personal characteristics and values to work closely with a dynamic leadership transitioning from Owner/Manager to Non-executive Director .

Our Head of Research and Managing Director worked together closely to deliver the key stages of candidate selection: identification, screening, assessment and validation. This approach delivered two detailed shortlists for the projects with all candidates invited for interview at Eden’s London offices.

The results

After an extensive search and interview process, Cawood appointed a very experienced Managing Director from the Agri-tech sector and a leading General Manager from a global food testing business. Both successful candidates built an immediate rapport with the current leadership team and have worked quickly to understand the dynamic challenges and opportunities that Cawood face as the sector and wider industry evolves.

Subsequently to the Group Managing Director and Technical Director appointments, Cawood Scientific has used Eden’s specialist interim solutions to engage with a Consultant to support the leadership of one of its divisions.