Hughes, whose business is operating under the working title of MCHA, is offering corporates and agencies strategic consultancy.
Meanwhile, seven of his former nine-strong staff have found new roles; although Dominique Boulton, former COI deputy director of live events, and senior manager Joy Barraclough are still looking for posts.
Hughes said his former colleagues "represent one of the strongest and most committed teams that I've ever developed.
"Their collective expertise and experience is a big loss for the public sector events community."
The rest of the team took voluntary redundancy in November 2010, when the COI shed 40% of its staff. Analysis of government events, p20.