Nick Keller is the founder of Benchmark, a company that creates and invests in purpose-driven business. At the helm of this dynamic company, Nick has spearheaded multiple brands that have changed the face of how sport interacts with business and purpose. This includes Sport Industry Group and the Sport Industry Awards – the world’s largest commercial sports awards evening and the Bloomberg Square Mile Relay, which harnesses the power of teamwork and employee engagement through physical wellness by running corporate races in 12 cities across the world.
In 2008, Nick recognised that the socio-economic landscape was on the brink of a monumental shift, and that business relationships with society were going to have to change, particularly in light of the financial crisis. In a move that proved prescient , he founded Beyond Sport with the support of some of the world’s most influential leaders like Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Richard Branson and Tony Blair and the backing of sports biggest players including the major US sports leagues — MLB, NFL, NHL, NBA and MLS — and brands like Barclays, TIME Magazine and PwC. The organisation has since become the global force for sustainable social change through sport, convening in cities around the world for thousands of people, where hundreds of high-level experts in politics, tech, innovation, shared-value and ethics speak, engage and debate on sport’s role in hard-hitting issues like the refugee crisis, youth gun crime and religious and ethnic divides.
Off the back of Beyond Sport’s success, he founded a consultancy division, thinkBeyond which has grown into one of the foremost agencies that advises some of the world’s biggest brands on social impact, including SAP, ESPN, the IOC, BT, among many more rights holders, leagues, teams and athletes.
Alongside this, Nick saw an opportunity within the burgeoning esport sector and founded NSE, the UK’s first governing body for university esport which engages thousands of students across the country and continues to grow through influential partnerships with the likes of BUCs, Microsoft and Intel.
A noted figure and regular commentator on sport’s role in sustainable development, social equality and purpose, Nick has also sat on the Global Advisory Board for The World Economic Forum on Sport and Society and speaks regularly on leadership, shared values and the future of business and society.