13 April 2021

Award-winning operations director Paul Watson is latest high-profile hire at Eave

Former Kelvin Hughes and Racal Acoustics Director brought in to help hearing protection company scale rapidly to meet growing demand

Eave, a UK-based tech company which has developed a unique hearing protection system for construction workers, has appointed Paul Watson to develop its operations capability. Watson is a highly experienced operations director whose leadership was instrumental to the growth and subsequent sale of both Kelvin Hughes and Racal Acoustics in recent years; his appointment is a major coup for Eave, which is currently scaling rapidly to meet growing demand.

Prior to joining Eave, Watson was a Board Member and Chief Operating Officer at FFEI, a maker of industrial digital inkjet systems and medical equipment. In this role he had full operational responsibility from sales support through to post-sales global customer support. Before FFEI, Watson was a Board Member and Operations Director at Kelvin Hughes, a producer of navigation, security and surveillance radar systems. Watson led multiple military and commercial projects at Kelvin Hughes, masterminded the establishment of a world-class modern production facility, and successfully delivered a Global customer service capability to install and maintain a range of marine radar equipment.

Prior to joining Kelvin Hughes, Watson was a Board Member and Operations Director at Racal Acoustics, a designer and manufacturer of communication and hearing protection equipment for civil and military applications. While at Racal, Watson was the Programme Director for a multi-million pound UK Ministry of Defence hearing protection project, created a Far East supply chain for a newly-designed active noise reduction headset for use in military wheeled vehicles, and was instrumental in increasing the enterprise value from £14m to £118m between 2004-2010. Watson played a key role in the sale of Racal Acoustics to Esterline Technologies in 2009 – a move which won the Growth Capital and Buyout Deal of the Year Award at the BVCA Private Equity Awards that same year.

In this newly created role at Eave, Watson will be responsible for driving operational excellence, optimising business performance, and establishing new processes and capabilities – whilst developing multi-channel approaches to delivering high-quality products and services.

Commenting on his appointment, Watson said: “I have a passion for high-tech businesses that are driven by innovative British engineering and used to address socially important issues. My time spent working in the Defence sector gave me firsthand appreciation of the impact that noise-induced hearing loss has on people’s lives, and so Eave’s mission resonated with me right away. I am delighted to have the opportunity to help grow the business further and deliver even greater quality and customer service to our partners.” David Greenberg, CEO of Eave, commented: “Even though Eave is really just getting started, our innovative and disruptive approach, rapid growth, and ambitious mission have enabled us to strike deals with many of the biggest construction companies in the UK – and attract talent of Paul’s high calibre. We’re delighted that Paul is bringing his wealth of experience to Eave – at a critical time when we need to scale efficiently to meet industry demand for a product which actually has the potential to tackle the epidemic of occupational deafness in noisy industries.”