Mipim latest: Former head of the civil service appointed chairman of Be First

The former head of the civil service Lord Kerslake has been appointed chairman of a London borough’s newly-launched development company.

Kerslake, who is also the former boss of the Homes and Communities Agency, joins Barking and Dagenham’s council’s property firm Be First.

The council said Be First would work to secure investment and development opportunities for the borough.

Commercially-focused but wholly-owned by the council, Be First will offer services including pre-planning services and project delivery, as well as setting up joint ventures and other special purpose companies to deliver regeneration.  

Speaking at Mipim in Cannes this week, Cllr Darren Rodwell said Lord Kerslake would be chairing what he called a “regen giant”.

Appointments to the board of Be First are expected to be completed by the summer of 2017, recruitment of a chief executive is expected by May, and the firm is due to begin trading in October this year.