PA Partner Nick Chaffey joins Northrop Grumman as UK and Europe CEO

13 August 2018 3 min. read
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A Partner of PA Consulting Group has joined one of the world’s largest arms traders as its UK and Europe leader. Nick Chaffey will serve as CEO for the region, as part of a number of changes at the top of the firm, which is bidding to reassert its reputation as a credible supplier following a number of recent scandals.

Northrop Grumman Corporation is an American global aerospace and defense technology company, which took its present form when Northrop completed its 1994 purchase of the Grumman group. As of 2015, the company was found to be the fifth-largest arms trader in the world, however, a succession of issues surrounding the firm’s Integrated Air and Missile Battle Command System (IBCS) culminated in a number of controversial developments behind schedule, before in 2016, a Director, Operational Test and Evaluation (the principal staff assistant and adviser to the US Secretary of Defense on operational and live fire test and evaluation activities involving US Department of Defense weapons systems) found a number of major faults with the system, concluding it was "neither mature nor stable."

As the firm bids to rebuild its international reputation, and expand on demand among its clients, Northrop Grumman has undergone a managerial transformation, announcing new CEOs in both the global and European wings of the group. While incumbent global CEO Wesley G. Bush will see out his term before being replaced by Kathy Warden in January 2019 – adding to the growing number of women leading defence firms – it will be more instantaneous in installing its new European leadership.

PA Partner Nick Chaffey joins Northrop Grumman as UK and Europe CEO

Northrop Grumman has hired PA Consulting Group Partner Nick Chaffey as its Chief Executive Officer for the United Kingdom and Europe, with the appointment taking effect as of August 28, 2018.  Chaffey, who holds an MBA, Diploma of Business Administration, from Imperial College London and a BEng (Hons) in Electronic and Optoelectronic Engineering from UCL, will play a large role supporting the company’s current programs, developing strategies for growth, and identifying new business opportunities for the company’s activities in the UK and Europe, including countries in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO).

Chaffey joins Northrop Grumman following a 25-year career at PA Consulting Group, where he announced he would take a sabbatical in June 2018. Most recently, Chaffey was engaged by the firm as its Global Head of Consulting Services in 2015, having previously founded and led PA’s Global Defence and Security Business, while holding a position on the Board of PA Holdings. Prior to his quarter century in the consulting industry Chaffey spent six years in the Royal Corps of Naval Constructors at the UK Ministry of Defense, working as a specialist project and programme manager focused on maritime programmes.

David Perry, Corporate Vice President at Northrop Grumman, said, "Nick brings a wealth of experience to Northrop Grumman as well as deep industry knowledge in defence and security gained in the consulting and public sectors. His appointment is important for our future success in the UK and Europe as we continue expanding our international presence and broadening our market focus to one that is increasingly global. I am delighted that he is joining us at this time."