Manoli Olympitis

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Emmanuel John "Manoli" Olympitis (born 19 December 1948)[1] is a British businessman. He is Chairman of Lyra Investments (UK) Ltd.,[1] a director of Canoel International Energy Ltd, director and chairman of China Cablecom Holdings Ltd's audit committee, as well as non-executive director and chairman of Photo-Me International Plc's audit committee.[2] He was educated at The King's School, Canterbury and then at University College London. His early business career began after moving to County Bank from a pupillage at the bar with the Inns of Court. As managing director, and later Group Chief Executive of Aitken-Hume International (the financial services company co-founded by former Conservative party Member of Parliament Jonathan Hume), Olympitis returned the merchant bank to profitability. Subsequently, as Executive Chairman of Pacific Media Plc, he led the company from the Alternative Investment Market to a full listing on the LSE.

Personal life

His first marriage, to Jan (Golding) Coleman Cushing, ended in 1986. He is now married to Emily Todhunter the Chelsea-based interior designer.[3] The couple have three children. John Olympitis, his son by Jan Amory is a Portfolio Manager in the United States. He speaks English and Greek fluently, as well as some French, Spanish and Italian. Thanks to various directorships across business sectors, Olympitis holds multiple regulatory qualifications in the UK, the US and around the world.


Emmanuel Olympitis matriculated at The King's School in Canterbury, Kent, and studied Law at University College London, where he took an LLB Honours degree in 1970. After his Law degree, he undertook a pupillage at the bar with the Inns of Court. Deciding against law as a career, he moved to merchant banking with County Bank from 1971 to 1973.


Emmanuel Olympitis spent the first years of his business career in New York firstly as Executive Director of Bankers Trust International Ltd from 1976 to 1980 and then as President of venture capital and mergers & acquisitions boutique Centaur Resources from 1981 to 1986.[4]

Aitken Hume International Plc

Olympitis became Group Chief Executive of the London-based financial services group, Aitken Hume International Plc in 1986.[1] The company was co-founded and chaired by former cabinet minister Jonathan Aitken. Olympitis successfully strengthened the finances of the loss-making company by turning a £9 million deficit into a £3 million profit.[no citations needed here]Sunday Times Business Section September 10 1989 Contango Column ‘Wilde Events at Aitken Hume’.

Johnson & Higgins Holdings Ltd

From May 1992 Olympitis was managing director and chairman of whole and reinsurance assurance broker Johnson & Higgins Holdings Ltd.[1] His efforts brought the company a Queen's Awards for Exports in 1994.[no citations needed here]A factual winner of The Queen’s Award for Export,Technological and Environmental Achievement in 1994. Link to Johnson and Higgins Insurance Company one of the largest insurance brokers in the world

Medway Insurance Group Plc

From May 1992 to October 1996, he was also appointed Chief Executive of Medway Insurance Group Plc, a US Vehicle for Lloyd's of London. See Daily Telegraph February 13 1997,Lloyd’s List Insurance Day, Post Magazine and The Herald of the same date.

Eastgate Assistance Ltd and Eastgate Group Ltd

He was also Chief Executive from May 1998 to June 1999 of Eastgate Assistance Ltd, a private insurance consultancy and support specialist and then Director of Eastgate Group Ltd.[1] see Financial Times December 2 1998 ‘Eastgate buys Hambro Assistance for £51m’.

Pacific Media Plc

From 1999 to 2004, Emmanuel Olympitis was Executive Chairman of Pacific Media Plc,[1] a fully listed LSE retail/media/e-commerce company focussed on Asia. Under his stewardship the market capitalisation increased from £5 million in October 1999 to a peak of £300 million in 2000.[no citations needed here] The company then joined the full LSE at the end of 2000 with the acquisition of TV Media Group, having previously been listed on the AIM. Pacific Media was subsequently sold in 2004 to a major private Taiwanese group. See Financial Times December 23 2000‘Pacific Media makes switch to full listing’, Evening Standard December 27 2000 ‘Pacific Media will move up to main market’,Official Notice published December 28 2000 in Financial Times, The Times, and The Daily Telegraph.

Canoel International Energy Ltd

From 2008 to 2011 Emmanuel Olympitis was a Director of Canoel International Energy Ltd.

Recent appointments

From July 2004 to August 2005, Emmanuel Olympitis was Chairman of Audit Committee of the Italian Residential and Commercial Development Company Norman 95 Plc and then worked as Founder Director and Chairman of the Audit Committee of Bulgarian Land Development PLC, the Bulgarian Residential and Commercial Development Company, from March 2006 to March 2007. Subsequently, he worked from 2007 both as Director of Secure Fortress Plc which provides Anti-Terrorist Information Technology Solutions and as Member of Audit Committee of Matica Plc, a manufacturer of credit, debit and provides identification and security cards until June 2009. More recently, Emmanuel Olympitis served as Chairman of Petrocapital Resources Plc from June 2008 to May 2010.[5][6]

His current appointments also include being Senior non-executive director & Chairman of the Remuneration Committee of Photo-Me International Plc.[2] he resigned as a director of China Cablecom Holdings Ltd in June 2011[7]

Writing career

By Victories Undone, written by Olympitis and Raymond Lewis, was published by Quartet Books in 1988. Called a 'Bestseller for intelligent readers' by Norman Mailer (who also wrote the foreword), Manoli dedicated the novel to Kathryn Skoyles, who ran the London mystery bookshop 'Crime in Store'.

The dedication was: "For Kathryn, And all her future victories, best wishes, Manoli, London, August 1988". The novel was no. 3 on Harrods' best seller list for several weeks in 1988.[no citations needed here]