Specialist electronics and engineering group Highland Scientific and Manx Graphene has announced the appointment of Professor Marlon Cruz as group research and design director and Paul Kerruish as group commercial director.
These new appointments come at a pivotal moment for the business, which is poised to capitalise on its own recent scientific breakthroughs in the commercial production of wide area graphene.
This so called ‘wonder substance’ is made up of a single layer of carbon atoms and its applications have the much-publicised potential to revolutionise the global electronics, aerospace, telecoms, bio-med and energy industries, amongst others.
The business is based at Isle of Man Freeport, Ballasalla. Founder and managing director John O’Driscoll said he he is delighted to be welcoming professionals of Marlon’s and Paul’s calibre to his Board.
Professor Marlon Cruz, a metallurgical engineer with a doctorate focused on tribology and surface wear engineering, joined the company in 2014 having been associate professor at the University of Simon Bolivar in Caracas Venezuela. John O’Driscoll said: ‘Having been able to attract a talent like Marlon to the island to join the business in 2014 was a major boost to the Group. This has enabled us to advance our research and development of a cutting edge graphene manufacturing process to be a reality and it is my pleasure and privilege to now welcome Marlon to our Board to help take the Group forward to what is set to be a very exciting period of developments and growth.’
Manx advocate Paul Kerruish successfully assisted nanaging director John O’Driscoll relocate part of his existing business and set-up on the Isle of Man in 2012.
John O’Driscoll said: ‘I always considered it would be fantastic to have Paul on the team and I decided now was the time to head-hunt Paul to take on a role as group commercial director.
‘He will be assisting me with overarching strategic planning, winning new business, managing investors, exploring new avenues of activity and seeking opportunities that the group can exploit in its bid to develop new markets for its products and continued growth.’
Paul Kerruish is a Manx advocate with more than 23 years qualified experience on a wide range of disciplines and latterly spent 10 years as managing director of Gough Advocates before setting up his own firm Kerruish Law in 2012.
Kerruish Law will continue to operate to service Paul’s high value commercial property clients and HNW private clients.
Stepping outside the traditional role of advocate for part of his time, will be a refreshing change for Paul, who said: ‘Opportunities like this are once in a lifetime and I feel extremely privileged to be invited by John to ‘‘step outside the box’’ and put my skills to work in a new and exciting way.
‘I could not be joining Highland Scientific and Manx Graphene at a more exciting time, with a range of new technologies under development that could take the group to the forefront of production of the highest quality graphene in a global market place where there appears to be insatiable demand.’
The Department of Economic Development has played an active role in the relocation and ongoing expansion of Highland Scientific.
Alfred Cannan MHK, the Isle of Man Department of Economic Development’s political member with responsibility for manufacturing said: ‘Highland Scientific and Manx Graphene are a superb example of the Isle of Man Government’s policy of economic diversification working at its best.
‘The Department had been working with John O’Driscoll for a number of years to highlight the benefits in relocating to the island and expanding his already successful business.
‘During this time, Highland Scientific has become an active member of the Isle of Man Aerospace Cluster.
‘I wish all the team at Highland Scientific and Manx Graphene success with their aim in becoming a major player in the global graphene market.’
According to the EU’s biggest ever research initiative the ‘Graphene Flagship’, graphene is the most versatile substance available and has a unique set of properties.
It is the first 2D atomic crystal known to us, is the thinnest object ever obtained, is the world’s strongest material, is extremely electrically and thermally conductive, is very elastic and impermeable to any molecules except water.