Essar Oil UK, the leading downstream energy company, has announced the appointment of Mark Palios, chairman and co-owner of Tranmere Rovers FC, as an independent non-executive board director, effective from 5 October 2022.
The appointment of the well-known North West-based businessman comes at a key juncture for Essar as it delivers on its investment plans of transitioning to become the UK's first low carbon energy provider.
Mark has co-owned Tranmere Rovers with his wife Nicola Palios since 2014 and brings over 40 years of commercial and senior leadership experience to Essar. Based in the North West, he is well-known across the region through his ownership of Tranmere Rovers and brings deep knowledge of the local community to Essar's Board.
Mark started his career as a professional footballer, playing for notable North West teams including Tranmere Rovers and Crewe Alexandra. After retiring from the professional game in 1986, he went on to have a distinguished career in business as a chartered accountant with Arthur Young and latterly as a senior partner at PwC, specialising in business turnaround. In 2003, he was appointed as chief executive of the Football Association, carving out a specialism and expertise in business and sports governance. He has extensive non-executive and executive board experience, sitting on the boards of a number of organisations and businesses.
The appointment by Essar marks another step in strengthening its corporate governance framework. Essar is committed to operating the highest level of governance standards across its business and committed last year to the Wates Principles - the corporate governance framework for large privately-owned businesses in the UK. Mark's addition to the Board follows Essar's appointment of Tim Bullock as an independent non-executive director in June 2021.
As well as supporting the Board and business in corporate governance and community relations, Mark will support in Essar's continued commercial growth strategy and its long-term decarbonisation and energy transition plans.
Essar has a well-established, long-term relationship with Tranmere Rovers. The partnership includes shirt and commercial sponsorship, but also a commitment to supporting the local charitable causes championed by the club as the Wirral's anchor institution.
Essar's executive Board members are: Deepak Maheshwari (Chief Executive Officer) and S. Thangapandian (Director). Its non-executive board members are: Kuthoore Natarajan Venkatasubramanian (Independent Non-Executive Director), Tim Bullock (Independent Non-Executive Director), Andrew Wright (Non-Executive Director), and Mark Palios (Independent Non-Executive Director). The Board is chaired by Prashant Ruia as non-executive chair.
Prashant Ruia, Non-Executive Chairman of Essar Oil UK, said: "We would like to welcome Mark to Essar Oil UK's Board. He brings over 40 years' commercial experience combined with an invaluable connection to our local community. As Chairman of Tranmere Rovers, we have got to know Mark and worked with him in supporting the activities of this leading community club. We are committed to upholding the highest standards of corporate governance, and this appointment forms a central part of that."
Mark Palios, Non-Executive Director of Essar Oil UK and Chairman of Tranmere Rovers FC, said: "I am delighted to join Essar's Board. This is an exciting time in the company's continued growth plans, as it delivers on its commitment for transforming for tomorrow by becoming a leader in the energy transition.
"I've seen first-hand the importance Essar gives to the local community, not just in its sponsorship of Tranmere Rovers, but across its operations. Not least, Essar continues to expand its apprenticeship programme and to welcome new graduate cohorts, both schemes that directly support the term career aspirations of our younger generation.
"As owner of Stanlow and Tranmere Terminal, Essar has played a critical role since 2011 in securing the long-term future of this vital national manufacturing asset and supporting thousands of local jobs. Essar's leadership has an innovative and exciting vision for the UK's future low-carbon energy market, and I am looking forward to being a part of it."