Tech Leadership and Innovation

1E’s new CEO battles giants to gain in experience

Mark Banfield, chief exec of 1E, is taking the experience management fight to massive rivals.


Mark Banfield meets me for coffee in a bar in Richmond, southwest London, just a few miles where he was brought up in Teddington. Born in once gutsy, working-class Shepherd’s Bush, his family were said to have “moved to the country”, he says, after leaving for the leafier part of town when Banfield was just two years old.

His parents saw education and labour as their way to a better future and his father, who had been a bus conductor, would rise before dawn to take his son to indulge his passion for swimming before spending the rest of the day at a City desk from 7.30am  then travelling home, eating supper, going to bed and starting the whole daily cycle again.

A bright kid, Banfield didn’t feel like he fitted in at the prestigious King’s College London and quit for a local alternative in Kingston. But that turned out to be a positive change as he became one of a small intake studying geographical information systems (GIS) in the mid-1990s. From there he arrived at digital mapping pioneer MapInfo, kickstarting his career in the IT sector.

Banfield’s upbringing helped make him what former colleagues say he is: a genial, hard-working, self-deprecating “London boy” who is now CEO at 1E, a company that is trying to be leader of the pack in the crowded experience management field.

Are you experienced?

Experience management is changing so fast that it doesn’t even have a clear TLA: you might have seen it referred to as DXM, UXM, DEM or some other acronym or abbreviation. That frenetic sort of marketing activity and attempts at pinning a name on a discipline is the sign of an area that is hot and there is a mad rush to be associated with delivering compelling experiences to customers and employers. London, England-headquartered 1E prefers DEM (for Digital Experience Management) or DEX (for Digital Employee Experience) and has pivoted from its background in green IT and software configuration management in pursuit of the opportunity.

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