Dean Forbes is one of the UK’s most unusual and successful business leaders.

Dean Forbes is one of the UK’s most unusual and successful business leaders.

Over a 20 year career, Dean’s drive, ability and determination has led him from being a junior sales executive in a call centre to becoming one of Britain’s top 50 business leaders according to Lloyds Bank and The Daily Telegraph. He has successfully turned around three once struggling enterprise technology organisations, building them into success stories for investors by delivering over $1bn in exit transactions. He was recently named to the Black Powerlist as one of the one hundred most influential black people in the United Kingdom.

“If people like me aren’t playing their part in lifting up, elevating and pushing forward the next generation of people from similar backgrounds to me, then who will do it? Enjoying success and gaining wealth and never elevating the next person is not how I want to be thought of or remembered."

– Dean Forbes

“If people like me aren’t playing their part in lifting up, elevating and pushing forward the next generation of people from similar backgrounds to me, then who will do it? Enjoying success and gaining wealth and never elevating the next person is not how I want to be thought of or remembered."

– Dean Forbes

Ironically, Dean’s road to success began with disappointment, as he failed to realise his early ambitions as a footballer. That disappointment was a blessing in disguise. An early business grounding first at Motorola led Dean to a leadership role at software firm Primavera Systems where he ran the company’s operation across Europe, Middle East, Africa and Asia Pacific; a role which saw him grow the business substantially and ultimately through to its sale to Oracle. Following the sale, Dean was asked to lead worldwide sales and marketing for a related division at Oracle making him the youngest vice president at Oracle for nearly 30 years. While at Oracle, Dean was asked by leading venture capital firm Accel to join KDS, a Paris headquartered SaaS company, where he later became CEO. After seven strong years, KDS was acquired by American Express (GBT) in a deal which at the time was the largest software deal in Amex GBT’s history.

At the end of 2016, Dean accepted the role of CEO at CoreHR, a human resources software company. Dean delivered three strong years of growth and profitability. He led CoreHR to be acquired by the UK’s largest privately owned software company The Access Group in the UK’s largest private to private Human Capital Management (HCM) M&A deal.

Following the deal, Dean took the role of President at the Access Group, integrating CoreHR into Access Group’s HR technology business and leading a team of over 1,000 employees. In early 2021, Dean became CEO of Forterro, a group of ERP software companies that serve SMEs in Europe, North America and around the world.

Dean’s story is testament to what’s possible when you define your goals and put your mind, body and soul into achieving them; especially when you’re able to build fantastic and enterprising teams around you who share your energy and vision.

At The Forbes Family Group, founded in 2020, Dean’s focus is to support the entrepreneurs the Group backs and invests behind. He is also an active mentor within the Group’s Project Ten initiative and on hand to advise the Group’s leadership team. Dean is passionate about social mobility and supporting those with similar backgrounds to his own.

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Project 10

Project 10 is a new programme designed to get ten young people every year ready for work.

Radar Management

Radar is driving the careers of UK CEOs as they chart their own professional growth course.

FFG Investments

FFG Investments aims to create and share investment opportunities with individuals of all financial and social standings through a unique network and pooling approach.

Levelling the playing field for the UK’s under-served communities.

If you’d like more information about Project 10, our mentorship schemes or our FFG Investments portfolio, please contact us using the form provided.

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