Nick Fry

Nick Fry

Former CEO, Mercedes F1

Synopsis

Having worked for Ford and Aston Martin all over the world, Nick moved into motorsport and F1. He restructured the Mercedes team, overhauled the commercial side, and led it to its first F1 Championships in both the constructor and driver tables. He looks at the leadership, decision-making, strategy and motivation required to win in the most competitive arenas and how to be a cutting-edge, responsive organisation.

Biography

Nick Fry has led one of the world’s best motorsport teams, one of the world’s most prestigious car brands, and areas of one of the world’s biggest motor manufacturers. As CEO of the Mercedes Petronas F1 team, he was responsible for securing the services of Lewis Hamilton and building a championship winning team. He revolutionised Aston Martin and headed customer service and European strategy at Ford.

Beginning his career with the Ford Motor Company Nick worked in the UK, Detroit and in Germany in areas including production and product planning. He moved to Aston Martin, becoming MD and was responsible for their modernisation from a prestige but somewhat staid British manufacturer to the dynamic, aspirational global brand it is today. He returned to Ford leading their European service division and then as Product Planning and Business Director. When Aston Martin were sold to private engineering and motorsport company ProDrive, he was appointed MD of the company. He helped lead their expansion into offering engineering services for the likes of Ferrari, as well as their motorsport success winning World Rally and Sports Car Championships.

Nick then moved to F1 as MD and then CEO initially with BAR Honda, which would evolve to become Brawn GP and eventually Mercedes Petronas. He re-structured the Mercedes team on and off the track after its long-term absence from the sport. He built high profile sponsorship deals, often in new industries, and led the team to its first race victory and subsequently World Championships both as a constructor and in the Drivers' Championship with Hamilton. He also oversaw innovative marketing and commercial programmes.

As a leader, Nick's passion and drive for the best informs everything he and his teams do. He recounts his experience in highly competitive environments in both sport and business, drawing lessons from areas where risk is viewed in sometimes dramatically different ways, where innovation and marginal gains are crucial, and where the pressure to improve is relentless. He considers how to deliver outstanding results in global, cross-cultural, fast-moving environments. He looks at how individuals and organisations can win and maintain high performance, drawing parallels between the cutting-edge world of F1 and big businesses. He also examines the key factors for decision-makers in strategic planning from management buyouts to marketing to dealing with change.

Nick now heads up his own sports commercial and marketing advisory firm and continues to work in motorsport and with Mercedes F1. He was also appointed a UK Business Ambassador by the UK Government and promotes British business expertise in engineering around the world.

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