Graham McIntosh, one of the key forces behind UDG Healthcare’s purchase of Procon, Universal CIT and WorldEvents and the subsequent merger of Univeral Procon and WorldEvents, is to leave the company at the end of December. McIntosh will be replaced by Nicola Burns, formerly Operational Effectiveness Director at the agency.

For the last twelve months McIntosh has been combining his role as Group Managing Director of Universal WorldEvents with that of CEO of Ashfield Japan and President of Pharmexx Northern Europe – a more recent acquisition of the Ashfield Commercial and Medical Services Division –  so his involvement with Universal WorldEvents had been slowly on the decrease. McIntosh has also been involved with Eventia as a member of the organisation’s board from which he will also stand down at the end of the year.

Commenting on his departure McIntosh said: “It has been an incredibly difficult decision – in fact, one of the most difficult I have ever had to make. I joined Ashfield in 1998 at the very beginning and 15 years later it has over 4,000 employees. The Meetings and Events business now has over 300 employees and Universal WorldEvents has seen double digit growth year on year since its merger”.

McIntosh said with regards to his new role, “I am joining a new pharmaceutical company as CEO and a key stakeholder which is not competitive to any part of the Ashfield Group. It is a very exciting opportunity and one which I could ultimately not turn down”.

Burns has over twenty years’ experience in the healthcare industry, and started working with Universal WorldEvents’ sister company In2Focus Ltd in 2002. In the ten years within the company she has worked in a number of different roles, including Head Of Sales Operations, Head Of Business Services and Head Of HR & Training. She worked closely with the management team through the acquisitions and subsequent merger of the events businesses, and was been heavily involved in the development of Universal WorldEvents.

Burns commented: “I am thrilled to take on the Universal WorldEvents helm from Graham and very much look forward to leading the company into the future”.