Educated at Woking Grammar School, Chris left at the age of 16 to spend the first 40 years of his business life in the media communications and marketing industry. He is regarded as the inventor of the modern media agency, having started The Media Department (TMD) in 1972 and Chris Ingram Associates (CIA) in 1976, which he built into an international, publicity-quoted business (Tempus Group) with offices in 29 countries and a turnover of £2 billion. The business was sold to WPP in 2001 for £430 million and is now Mediadge:cia.
In 2000, Chris was voted UK Business to Business Entrepreneur of the Year in Ernst & Young’s awards, having earlier been London Entrepreneur of the Year. In 2003-4, he was Entrepreneur in Residence at Wharton Business School.
In July 2007 Chris was made an Honorary Fellow of London Business School where he is closely involved with the Innovation and Entrepreneurship Faculty. He was Deputy Chairman of London Business School’s Foundation for Entrepreneurial Management until 2007 and from 2002-8 was Chairman of the Centre for Creative Business, a joint venture between London Business School and the University of Arts, London to help principals in the creative industries improve their general business skills.
His partnership Ingram Enterprise LLP was set up in 2008. It invests and actively assists ambitious entrepreneurs and SMEs in the media communications, sport and digital sectors in London and New York.
In 2008, he was honoured in Campaign’s Hall of Fame as one of those who have helped to shape the UK’s advertising industry over the last 40 years.
Chris’s passion is football and he is owner of Woking Football Club, since rescuing the Club in 2002.
In 2009 he became Executive Chairman of Sports Revolution, specialising in the commercial exploitation of in-stadia rights and on improving the fan experience. It is the largest company of its kind in the UK, working with 16 English Premier football clubs and both Wembley and Twickenham.
Chris is also a highly enthusiastic collector of Modern British art and sculpture and since 2008, his 350 piece collection has been based at The Lightbox, Woking’s new award-winning museum and gallery. There is an active programme of loans, both in the UK and internationally.
His family charity, The Ingram Trust, supports approximately two dozen charities, both national and international, as well as local ones in Surrey. He is personally involved in assisting Shelter, WWF and Action Aid in Kenya.