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Business Innovation and Transformation: the Role of the CIO

22nd June 2017, London

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Venue: South Place Hotel


Digital disruption has forced many companies to re-think their business models. Whether to keep up with customer demands or threats from more agile competitors, organisations need an innovation strategy to keep driving business success.

The most disruptive start-ups are those that use technology to introduce new business models to established industries. Despite their greater resources, customer relationships and supplier networks, larger organisations often find it more difficult to adopt innovative business models, even under the threat of disruption.

A recent survey of 200 leaders at large UK businesses, conducted by The Economist Intelligence Unit and sponsored by Rackspace, explored the state of business model innovation in the UK. It found that 92% of respondents believe technology is the critical driver for business model innovation.

So how does the CIO start leading these innovation discussions at a business level? Is technology seen as an enabler or an inhibitor? And how can CIOs embrace and adopt new cloud technologies to drive innovation whilst managing the skills and expertise needed?

Join our select group of CIOs and senior IT Leaders as we discuss their experiences of business innovation and share best practices, and discover the five things CIOs need to do to drive an innovation mindset in their teams and organisations.


6:00 – 6:30 pm – Welcome Reception & Cocktails
6:30 – 6:40 pm – Introduction from Master of Ceremonies
6:40 – 7:00 pm – Keynote Speaker
7:00 – 9:00 pm – Three-course dinner complemented with table discussion points
9:00 – 9:30 pm – Wrap up and closing remarks from Rackspace

Discussion Topics

  • How can CIOs balance managing multi-cloud technology and vendors whilst continuing to navigate the business through innovation?
  • How can the notion of “Think Big, Start Small, Learn Fast” help in implementing successful innovation efforts?
  • How does the CIO overcome organisational fear of change in order to lead this transformation?

Keynote Speaker


Lee James, Chief Technology Officer at Rackspace EMEA

He comes with over 20 years of experience across large-scale multinationals and agile-based environments, delivering industry leading cloud, analytics, digital strategy and transformation. His extensive background includes senior roles across FTSE 10 and 250 organisations like BP, Betfair and GlaxoSmithKline (GSK).

Charged with moving the Rackspace proposition forward, Lee owns the go-to-market propositions for our products and services, making sure they’re directly aligned with customer requirements and future market trends

His previous role was Cloud and Analytics Service Enablement Director at Computacenter, where he was responsible for transforming the brand, building professional and managed service offerings, and growing the £1bn+ services business.

In his spare time, Lee relaxes with his wife and family, bringing up three boys, including a set of twins. He’s also a keen sportsman, playing golf and football, while maintaining an unhealthy (but sometimes rewarding) passion in Hull City Football Club and Hull FC Rugby League Club.

About Rackspace

The cloud was supposed to make our lives easier. But it turns out, the cloud is complicated to build, run, maintain and manage — especially across multiple platforms and locations, with technology that’s always changing.

If it feels like the cloud has been managing you, it’s time to turn the tables.

With Rackspace by your side, you can thrive in today’s multi-cloud world. We will help you tap the power of cloud computing — across OpenStack®, AWS®, Microsoft® and VMware® technologies — without the pain, complexity and cost of doing it all yourself.


We have the expertise to support your workloads at scale across all the leading public and private clouds, whether they’re powered by AWS, Microsoft, OpenStack or VMware.

We’re a world leader in managed hosting on dedicated servers, and we’re driving rapid innovation in the area of containers and API-accessible, instantly deployable bare-metal servers • We serve customers in more than 120 countries — from startups to more than half of the global enterprises in the Fortune 100 • We host more of the world’s top 1,000 ecommerce sites than any other cloud provider • We employ teams of experts who specialise in managing cloud infrastructure, security, web content platforms, databases, containers, email and collaboration apps, disaster recovery and IT transformation • We rapidly create technical expertise at scale. In Q4 2015 alone, our AWS engineers earned over 200 technical certifications and more than 1,000 technical and business accreditations • We have hundreds of certifications in a broad range of technology including Cisco, MS, AWS, Red Hat and VMware • We hold a broad range of security, compliance and content protection certifications • Rackspace co-founded OpenStack and is the leading operator of OpenStack public and private clouds.


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