'I am delighted to be joining. There is a lot of hard work that lies ahead' - Town's new CEO Ashton confirmed
- Credit: Archant
Mark Ashton has been confirmed as Ipswich Town's new chief executive officer. He will join on 1 June, 2021.
Town's new American owners, along with new chairman Mike O’Leary, made hiring a ‘top quality’ CEO their first priority since buying the club from Marcus Evans in a deal understood to be worth in the region of £40m.
“I am delighted to be joining. There is a lot of hard work that lies ahead and I am genuinely excited at the opportunity to take the Club forward," Ashton said.
“In the meantime, it is only right that I devote my attention to Bristol City for the remainder of the season so this is the only public comment that I will be making at this time.”
Commenting on the announcement, the chairman of Ipswich Town, Mike O’Leary, said: “We are delighted to welcome Mark Ashton to Portman Road. It is difficult to envisage anyone having better experience for a CEO job than Mark.
“He is a high energy, demanding, loyal, commercially savvy, well-connected and high integrity leader and we look forward very much to him making a major contribution to our journey here at Ipswich Town.”
Ashton and O’Leary have worked together previously, both at Oxford United and previously at West Bromwich Albion. They have also both served as directors of investment firm Alycidon Ltd, formerly Ensco 1070, from 2014 to 2015.
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With almost 30 years experience in the football industry, Ashton is currently the CEO of Bristol City, a role that he has held since 2016, while he is also an elected Championship director on the EFL Board.
Prior to joining Bristol City, Mark was with West Bromwich Albion for 16 years, originally as a player and then moving into various executive roles.
In 2004 he joined Watford as CEO, a period that culminated in promotion to the Premier League. In 2014 Mark played a prominent role in the takeover of Oxford United and subsequently ran the club as CEO for the next two years.
Ashton was named Championship CEO of the year in 2019, having earned great praise for his dealings in the transfer market which have netted City millions of pounds through selling players on to the Premier League.
Town are in action at AFC Wimbledon tonight in a League One fixture, 6.30pm kick-off, while Town's U23s lost 0-1 to Barnsley at Playford Road this afternoon.