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Commercial Reviews

Jan Sowa, Greenhouse and Nina Musgrave, Nina & Co have teamed up to offer unrivalled expertise for students' unions and like minded organisations.


Greenhouse is a strategic, organisational and business development specialist comprising a collaboration of five business professionals with many years of experience at Board and senior management level across the public, private, and social sectors, and from start-ups to public limited companies. Our clients benefit from our strategic as well as operational expertise. We provide support services in particular within the charity, education, and health sectors, as well as new start-ups.

Within the Greenhouse team, Jan Sowa is the specialist focussing on organisational and business strategy within the charity and education sectors. His career has included turning around poorly performing divisions and functions within Whitbread plc and he has held four directorships and one trusteeship in the leisure and social sectors, including founding and leading a highly successful leisure retail business for nine years, before founding Greenhouse in 2008 to assist the strategic development of organisations. He has a particular commitment to the development of students’ unions, focusing on strategic and commercial reviews, and coaching of senior executives.

Pat Griffin is a highly experienced leader with extensive professional expertise in both the commercial and education sectors. She began her career in brand management of Fosters and Kronenbourg 1664 lagers at Courage Brewing before appointment as Marketing Director for Burger King UK & Spain within Diageo plc. She was a Board Director in a leading brand strategy consultancy, before founding a consultancy where she led a team of marketing and research consultants, working with blue chip clients, including the Board of South African Breweries.

Sally Holme has 25 years’ experience of successful retailing, having covered all areas at the renowned Bettys and Taylors, gaining an unparalleled understanding of the catering and retail markets, before becoming Managing Director. Throughout her eleven years as MD, group sales grew to £90m, employees increased to 1200, and consistently strong trading results were achieved. Sally was later Chair of the board at Bagel Nash, and has achieved industry awards including two Queen’s Awards for sustainability. She has a special interest in ethical trading.

Nina & Co is a unique marketing agency which operates as a collective of small businesses and individuals, each highly experienced in their specific marketing specialism; managed and co-ordinated by an award-winning marketing consultancy. This results in our clients getting director-level specialist skills and benefitting from a truly personal and professional service. We have unrivalled expertise working with students’ unions and their institutions on all aspects of marketing from research and insight to concept creation, and capital projects. Every member of our team is a passionate food & drink and student specialist. We absolutely love these sectors.

Nina Musgrave has over 30 years of senior commercial experience across the leisure and hospitality sector. Before setting up her own agency Nina & Co. in 2011, Nina held numerous director level marketing and catering development positions. Nina is entrepreneurial, enthusiastic, flexible, and is totally passionate about all aspects of food and drink marketing, and her particular strengths lie in brand and concept development, research and insight of the student community, interpreting and bringing to life new market trends, capital development projects and all things operational that can deliver results. She has proven skills in group facilitation and research and has extensive experience of this in the students’ union sector with trustees, managers, and staff.

Greenhouse and Nina & Co. have collaborated on numerous assignments over several years. Our considerable and unparalleled input into strategic development within the sector, and the ability to work effectively within a students’ organisation/charity setting, includes:

  • Relevant experience in working with over 80 students’ unions and associations in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland over the last decade, involving interactions with officers, senior managers, external and student trustees, students, staff, and senior executives across institutions which have required insight, tact and the ability to respond to a wide diversity of perspectives and challenges, and understanding the differences across campuses.

  • Commercial and strategic organisational reviews of the business development functions of a variety of charities such as The Scout Association, and the National Association for Voluntary & Community Action. We also assist smaller charitable organisations such as Suffolk Community Transport and BYHP (Banbury Young Homelessness Project) in business development and accessing fundraising opportunities.

  • Successful collaboration on a variety of assignments with students’ unions, including major building developments, campus food and beverage services, assessment of potential commercial enterprises, and comprehensive commercial reviews. Our proven techniques combining semi-structured meetings, in-depth research, rigorous assessment of documentation, and up to date knowledge of key sectors, consistently meet demanding expectations, with every assignment conducted to date achieving the deadlines, some very tight, set by clients.

  • Numerous positive interventions and diagnostics dealing with strategic and organisational development within students’ unions and associations across the UK.

  • Quality assurance forms a fundamental part of our approach, the post-assignments feedback from clients is highly positive, and we are regularly requested to conduct further assignments.

  • Jan has been an external trustee of the University of Manchester Students’ Union for six years and is keenly aware of a variety of the strategic challenges within the sector, while Nina is the Chair and director at Oxford SU’s commercial arm OSSL.

  • Our experience in organisational and business development spans over 30 years across several sectors, with consistently improved performance being a feature.

Making a real difference We customise our approach to fit the unique needs of each students' union.

Our tailor-made reports offer:

  • Financial growth or cost-saving

  • Enhanced social impact and competence

  • Improved reputation for both the union and institution

  • Greater engagement with a diverse student community

  • Competitive advantages within your locality

Our comprehensive process includes:

  • In-depth initial meetings to define goals and expectations

  • Stakeholder interviews to understand perspectives and capabilities

  • Thorough assessment of campuses, facilities, and operations

  • 360° research using various methodologies

  • SWOT analysis and strategic recommendations for ROI

  • Consideration of resource demands and market changes

  • Utilisation of up-to-date trend data and forecasts


We tailor our services to your specific needs and offer comprehensive research-driven solutions for your success.

Our Team

Nina Musgrave

Jan Sowa


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