Jim Ratcliffe MSc13(1980) was a chartered accountant and worked for Esso before doing an MBA at London Business School. He then spent several years at private equity group Advent International, a period in which he bought his first business. In 1992, with backing from Advent, he co-led the buyout of a chemicals business from BP to form Inspec.
Inspec achieved a 15-fold increase in value within two years, prompting Ratcliffe to lead a management buyout of Inspec's chemicals divisions to create Ineos Group. The company is now one of the world’s top chemical producers, with around 6,500 employees, £10.5 billion in revenue and £8.2 billion worth of assets.
Ratcliffe owns Lime Wood, a luxury hotel in Hampshire, and is a stakeholder in Pig, a boutique hotel chain. He is also an advisory board member at Aberdeen Murray Johnstone Private Equity Fund.
In December 2014, Ratcliffe was named the chemicals sector’s most influential senior executive in the ICIS Chemical Business Top 40 Power Players list. In 2008, he received an honorary fellowship at the Royal Society of Chemistry’s annual Industry and Technology Forum Innovation Awards.
Ratcliffe is a keen sportsman and polar explorer, and founder of charity Go Run for Fun. He received the Alumni Achievement Award in 2014.
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From dealing with worker strikes to navigating the economic downturn, Jim Ratcliffe MSc13(1980) has endured some tough times while heading up Ineos. But the British businessman has a canny ability to emerge stronger after dealing with adversity.