Intrepid Group gives Edwards & Barnes new roles on executive team
Michael Edwards and Leigh Barnes

[People] Intrepid Group gives Edwards & Barnes new roles on executive team

TORONTO — The Intrepid Group has added two new senior executive roles to its global leadership team: Michael Edwards, Chief Growth Officer (CGO), and Leigh Barnes, Chief Purpose Officer (CPO).

Edwards will move into his new role effective Jan. 1, 2018, while Barnes will step foot into his newly created role on July 1, 2018.

Since retaining independent ownership two years ago, the Intrepid Group has seen record growth of 20% per year across all of its brands. CEO James Thornton created the two roles to focus on sustained growth in both purpose and profit. According to Thornton, the CGO and CPO will help Intrepid Group become the first billion-dollar adventure travel company, while at the same time donating $3 million into local communities through the Intrepid Foundation by 2020.

“The new senior executive roles are a testament to the rapid growth and innovation we are experiencing as a global leader in the tourism industry,” said Intrepid Group CEO James Thornton. “We created these roles so that we can continue to fulfill our business’s founding philosophy of helping people and the planet through travel – while creating a new industry standard where purpose and profit are not mutually exclusive.”

In his new role as CGO, Edwards, formally Intrepid Group’s regional director in Europe, Middle East and Asia, will manage the Group’s Regional Directors and Marketing Services team. In 2018, he will help expand the company’s Adventure Cruising program into Asia and launch its first Antarctica charters in partnership with Chimu Adventures.

Barnes, formally director of North America, will work closely with The Intrepid Foundation and external partners. Next year, the Group will be committing 0.75% of global revenue towards purpose activities, creating a team of dedicated employees to lead The Intrepid Foundation, and attaining B-Corp status.

“The board and the leadership team are confident that Leigh Barnes and Michael Edwards are the best people for their respective roles and ensure the company is both profitable and sustainable,” said Thornton.