New commercial leader enhances TP Group’s strategic capabilities

kris lipscombe

TP Group has further strengthened its senior leadership with the appointment of Kris Lipscombe as Head of Commercial. Kris supports internal teams and TP Group’s small to medium enterprise (SME) network in the successful fulfilment of customer contracts.

With more than two decades’ experience in the defence industry, Kris is well-versed in the sector’s needs, challenges, and processes. He also brings the necessary expertise to work effectively with Ministry of Defence (MoD) departments looking to transform how they do business.

Bringing clarity, harmony, and rigour to customer projects

One of Kris’ priorities is to embed collaborative and agile ways of working at the outset of commercial projects. This is an area where he brings extensive knowledge and first-hand learnings from previous roles.

Kris is a law graduate who began his career at the historic Barrow-in-Furness shipyard working on what later became the Dreadnought submarine programme. This early experience gave him valuable insights to the potential pitfalls that can hinder large, complex projects involving multiple delivery partners. He ensures TP Group abides by industry recognised principles for collaborative business relationship management systems and believes that robust contractual arrangements are advantageous to all parties.

“Collaboration is the single most important aspect of any multi-party project, especially where lengthy timeframes are involved.” Kris explains. “When everybody works in harmony and processes are seamless, the overall effect is synergistic. But when requirements and responsibilities are unclear, small issues can escalate into serious problems with implications for budgets and deadlines. A big part of my role at TP Group is enabling our internal teams, SME partners, and customers to work in a collaborative way. I ensure contractual language is consistent and that all parties understand what’s expected of them and when. This ensures transparency, avoids ambiguity, and gives commercial relationships a strong footing.”

Contract governance is another important part of Kris’ role. He advocates a proportionate risk-based approach to ensure processes are streamlined and efficient while adhering to relevant standards. His skills in this discipline were honed in previous leadership roles for BAE Systems, MoD, and aerospace company Leonardo UK.

“Rigour is vital when it comes to commercial contracts, but so is flexibility. Some of our SME partners are very small, specialising in niche but necessary areas. TP Group’s customers include MoD departments which are keen to leverage this talent and draw from a sustainable industrial base. Meeting today’s everchanging defence needs requires new ways of thinking and agile practices so specific skills can be scaled up and down as required. Building fluidity into contractual arrangements fosters efficiency and cost-effectiveness. It gives our customers more control over budgets and the capacity to respond fast when new challenges emerge.”

With further growth on the cards, making collaboration central to new and existing SME and customer relationships is a strategic priority for TP Group.


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