Robert D. Kilgour - Background

Robert D. Kilgour


Robert Kilgour is a Scottish serial entrepreneur, investor and property developer who is also Chief Executive of Dow Investments Plc, which he founded in 1990.

Robert was born in Edinburgh, brought up in Fife and currently divides his time between London and Scotland.

His first major project after leaving University (where he ran a market stall selling jeans at the weekends) was the purchase, management and upgrading of a small hotel in the 'New Town' area of Edinburgh where he increased turnover by some 400% before selling it on.

From there Robert went on to start and then build up Four Seasons Health Care (care homes and home care) and he exited this business after initiating and seeing through the strategy that led to the public/private take-over of Crestacare Plc in the summer of 1999 - a deal involving Alchemy Partners which had an Enterprise Value of £127M .

Four Seasons was then operating 101 care homes throughout the UK (5th largest) and employing over 6,500 staff. It is still one of the UK's largest care home operators with some 190 care homes, 10,000 residents and around 13,000 staff.

It was subsequently sold by Alchemy Partners through Goldman Sachs to Allianz Capital Partners for £775M in July 2004 and in September 2006 it was sold by Allianz Capital Partners for around 1.5Bn to a Qatari investment group.

Robert left Four Seasons Health Care in early 2000 and made his final financial exit from the company in 2004.

Yearning for the entrepreneurial again, he co-founded CamVista Ltd, a webcam business that led him being a Finalist in the E & Y Scottish Entrepreneur of the Year Competition in 2001 and that counted the world famous illusionist David Copperfield as a client along with many UK 'Blue Chips'.

In 2004, Robert co-founded NW Security Group Limited and in the same year he founded Renaissance Care (Scotland) Ltd - which now operates 15 care homes throughout Scotland employing 1,150 part and full time staff - and he was involved in the sourcing and completing of over $37m worth of property deals in New York, over 13m of the same in London and also provided care home consultancy services in Australia.

In the early 1990's, he opened an office in Siberia which arranged a number of sporting and business exchanges between Russia and Scotland including a 10 day tour by the 'Barbarians' Rugby Club.

Robert was Chairman of the Fife Macmillan Appeal (1993-95) a public appeal which raised £1.75M towards improving hospice provision in Fife in Scotland and included the organising of a business lecture from Sir John Harvey-Jones MBE attended by 500 local business men and women. In 2007 he personally donated £50,000 to help establish a Macmillan Cancer Information & Support Centre at a London hospital to mark his 50th birthday, the first of its kind in the UK.

On the 9th December 2009 Robert opened the Macmillan Cancer Information & Support Centre at the Western General Hospital, Edinburgh, the 25th such unit in the UK, which was partly funded by a 30,000 personal gift.

Robert was Chairman and founding shareholder of Kingdom FM Radio Ltd a Scottish local (Fife) radio station franchise holder, before he engineered its recent successful sale in 2019. And he has in the past served as a Non-Executive Director of a leading Scottish Architectural and QS practice.

He is also currently a Non-Executive Director of Hamilton Kilgour Ltd (Corporate Governance Consultancy), Morphose Capital Partners Ltd (International M&A Advisory), Lifelinked Ltd (software developer), Borland Private Clients Ltd and My Care Staff Ltd (online care staff marketplace).

Dow Investments Plc is a CBI member and Robert has served on CBI Scottish Council, CBI UK SME Council and the Scottish Growing Business Forum. He is a member of the Association of Project Managers and a Fellow of both the Institute of Directors and the Chartered Management Institute.

Robert was educated at Loretto School and the University of Stirling (where he was Treasurer of the Students Union) and he stood as a Conservative Westminster Parliamentary Candidate against Lord (George) Robertson (recent Secretary-General of Nato) in the 1997 General Election in Hamilton South. He has also addressed the IOD Annual Convention at the Royal Albert Hall in London.

His current interests include travel, tennis, skiing, politics and he was appointed as the first Macmillan Cancer Support Ambassador in December 2018.

Robert is married to his second wife, Jacqueline, a financial services lawyer and has four wonderful children from his first marriage - Anya (34), Andrea (32), Russell (28) and Eve (26), and one granddaughter, Ruby.


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