Financial regulators and electronic trading firms relying increasingly on management consultancies for PR

Regulators and institutional companies are increasingly looking toward outsourcing PR and external affairs to professional services firms. This week, David Waller joins FTI Consulting as Managing Director in a sector that is growing rapidly to support the behemoths and leviathans of the industry

London, Canary Wharf from Thames

A recent and quite interesting dynamic is the outsourcing of public relations and communications by regulatory authorities, large electronic trading firms and institutional financial services providers to large professional services consultancies.

In particular, global strategic consulting company FTI Consulting is one particular professional services company that has become very interested in providing such service to large firms and regulators.

This week, FTI Consulting appointed David Waller as Senior Managing Director in the company’s Financial Services Practice within FTI Consulting’s Strategic Communications division.

An experienced and mature industry executive, Mr. Waller graduated from Oxford University in 1984 with a BA in English before joining the Financial Times as a journalist, where he spent 9 years.

In 1997, Mr. Waller founded Chancery Communications in London, looking after the public relations for companies in the City.

5 years later, he became Head of Communications for Dresdner Kleinwort, leaving in 2005 to become Head of External Relations at European insurance giant Allianz.

David Waller

Tenures at The Maitland Consultancy and MAN Group led to Mr. Waller’s appointment in 2013 to the Association for Financial Markets in Europe (AFME) where he was Director of External Affairs.

With this level of experience, FTI Consulting is bolstering its financial markets talent within its Strategic Communications section, with Mr. Waller entering at senior executive level.

FTI Consulting looks after the external communications for many institutions and national regulators. Indeed CySec recently took its public relations to FTI Consulting, the entire communications for the regulatory authority being handled by FTI Consulting Senior Consultant Mitch Barltrop, a graduate of the University of Edinburgh who has completed internships within top level government departments in the UK including at the Scottish Parliament and the House of Commons in London.

The outsourcing of PR to professional services companies at this level is relatively new to this industry, especially as the technological aspect of the financial markets business continues to be a major part of the business.

Going back a decade, it was only the systems and solutions architecture that were outsourced, with many institutions using companies such as Fujitsu-Siemens, Atos Consulting, Accenture and PriceWaterhouseCoopers to supply on-site Solutions Architects and Project Leads, largely in institutional divisions of financial institutions and large banks.

The public affairs and advertising side of the business was never a remit for outsourcing, the at the time grey suited financial services industry being anathema to the available services from flamboyant creative agencies such as Ogilvie and Mather, and thus a world apart.

Now, a new means of getting the corporate and regulatory message across has most certainly developed, as professional services consultancies with specialist departments provide experienced executives to be able to carry this out effectively.


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