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Mike Kellard, the chief executive of the UK wealth management arm of AXA Group pedals from Basingstoke to Paris
HE IS used to leading from the front and today the chief executive of AXA UK will be piling on the pedal power for a good cause as he arrives at the French group’s head office on the Champs-Élysées.
Mike Kellard, who heads the UK wealth management arm of AXA Group, has been joined by four senior colleagues on a gruelling 200-mile plus challenge that started at the company’s Basingstoke offices in Winterthur Way on Tuesday morning.
His cycling team-mates are Dave Deadman, senior programme manager, Simon Daunter, Mike’s business adviser, Nick Elphick, chief operating officer, and Dave Whiteman, head of the executive office.
The five have set themselves a £12,000 target, with money raised from the two-and-half-day ride being split between St Michael’s Hospice , in Basingstoke, and St Peter’s Hospice, which is close to the company’s Bristol offices. Last year, Mike, pictured above and with the team, took part in a ride from Basingstoke to Bristol, raising £11,877. Mike said: “Last year we had so much great support that we thought we should really do it again. We did a mountain bike route to Bristol, so this time we thought we have to try and better it, so we decided to use road bikes. I think it was Dave Deadman who came up with the idea of cycling to Paris.”
St Michael’s is currently the chosen charity of the year for AXA staff in Basingstoke.
St Michael’s chief executive David Monkton, who saw the quintet off, said Basingstoke staff have raised close to £20,000 for the hospice this year.
“We are using that money to help fund an education nurse, whose job is to educate patients and staff on modern techniques of medicine care and palliative care. “AXA is our biggest corporate sponsor. The support they give us is tremendous.”
Impressed with the AXA chief executive’s efforts and those of his senior colleagues, David said: “It’s alright when you ask staff to fund raise, but when the CEO and senior team do it, that gives more emphasis and shows there is a lot of support in the organisation.”