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  • Nov 4, 2020

Nova Group is delighted to announce the appointment of Jim McDowell as its new Group CEO, effective Monday, 30 November.

Jim has 30 years’ experience in both the private and public sectors. Most recently, Jim was South Australia’s top public servant in the role of Chief Executive for the Department of the Premier and Cabinet.

Prior to that he was the CEO of BAE Systems Australia and oversaw the purchase of Tenix Defence. Under his leadership, the company expanded to become Australia’s largest defence prime, with more than 6,500 employees and annual sales of approximately AUD $1.7 billion. He then moved to Saudi Arabia where he took up the role of in-country CEO for the $6 billion business. Jim also worked in legal, commercial and marketing roles with aerospace company Bombardier Shorts for 18 years after graduating from the University of Warwick (England).

“Jim is the right person to lead Nova into the future ushering in an exciting new chapter of the company’s long and proud history,” said Jim Whalley, Chairman and Founder, Nova Group.
“He has a proven record of leadership and a breadth of business experience that we believe is critical to lead Nova, including the ability to forge major client relationships and a commitment to our people and the behaviours we want to emulate.

“We are on a growth path at Nova and are very well-positioned to continue building on our strong momentum and capitalise on the many opportunities the future holds. I welcome Jim to the Nova family,” said Mr Whalley.

Julie Cooper, who has served as Interim Group CEO since June, will return to her role as Non Executive Director on the Nova Group Board.

In addition to his global experience, Jim brings with him a genuine passion for growing local industrial capability and developing valuable IP for Australia.

“I am honoured to have the opportunity to lead this exceptional Australian owned and operated company – one that has so much potential, and is full of smart people,” said Jim McDowell, Group CEO, Nova Group.

“Together with the Group’s Executive Leadership Team, it is my goal to ensure we continue to make Nova’s approach to people our point of difference, keep value generation at the forefront of our minds and focus on our clients. These have always been at the core of Nova and I will continue to keep them front-and-centre as we move forward.”

Jim is serving, or has served, on the board of several major Australian businesses and community organisations. including the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation, Air Warfare Destroyer Principals Council, the Royal Automobile Association (RAA), Adelaide Football Club, The Australian Strategic Policy Institute Council and St Peter’s College Council of Governors.

About Nova Group

Nova Group is a leading engineering services and technology solutions partner.​ ​Our vision is to solve the complex challenges that really matter to our clients. Nova’s businesses include professional services provider Nova Systems, aerospace engineering firm GVH Aerospace, Geospatial firm Geoplex, and software as a service firm two10degrees. We employ 650 talented and dedicated professionals across our strategically located offices across Australia, New Zealand, South East Asia, the United Kingdom and Europe. We also engage an additional 200 professionals who are strategic partners that make up our supply chain.


Media contact

Jessica Thomas
Director Strategic Communications
Nova Group
M: +61 419 762 724

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