Insight into Hargreaves Lansdown’s top talent acquisition as IG Group exec Christopher Hill becomes CFO

Whilst electronic trading, fintech and global FX markets are most certainly London-centric, Bristol, a city 100 miles west of the capital, has for hundreds of years been a mainstay of Britain’s financial services industry, largely centered around insurance, life assurance, pensions and investments, with a large number of independent financial advisers selling funds and investments to […]

Whilst electronic trading, fintech and global FX markets are most certainly London-centric, Bristol, a city 100 miles west of the capital, has for hundreds of years been a mainstay of Britain’s financial services industry, largely centered around insurance, life assurance, pensions and investments, with a large number of independent financial advisers selling funds and investments to retail customers across the country.

Despite there being very little similarity between London’s electronic trading industry and Bristol’s traditional financial and life assurance businesses, one particular company, Hargreaves Lansdown, has risen from its origins as an independent financial adviser in the mid 1980s to a firm which is attracting talent from London’s finest.

Today, it was announced that Christopher Hill, CFO of London-based publicly-listed CFD and spreadbetting firm IG Group Holdings plc (LON:IGG) has announced his resignation to join Hargreaves Lansdown as CFO.

Ship Shape and Bristol Fashion

Established in 1981 by Yorkshireman Peter Hargreaves CBE, a former computer salesman, and Bristolian Stephen Lansdown, an accountant, Hargreaves Lansdown grew from a FIMBRA-registered independent financial adviser in the 1980s and early 1990s, placing retail business with Bristol-based life assurance firms such as Commercial Union and General Accident, to a company which developed its own proprietary investment platform.

The platform, which operates under the name Vantage, enables investors to hold different types of investments in one place with one valuation and one dealing service. Most of the asset classes handled are ISA, SIPP along with a fund and share dealing account.

In true West Country fashion, the company also operates unit trusts, a type of investment which was pioneered by Mark Weinberg of Allied Dunbar over 30 years ago.

As a teenager who (mis) spent his youth programming and configuring PBX switches for electronic trading desks in banks as an apprentice some 24 years ago for two years in Bristol’s city center, I remember Hargreaves Lansdown’s original offices located in merchant-style premises just off Whiteladies Road in Clifton, Bristol, and can categorically emphasize that since those beginnings, the company has grown its operations and services tremendously.

To give an idea of its substantial growth, in April 2009, Mr. Lansdown relinquished a 4.7% stake in Hargreaves Lansdown for a sum of £47.2 million, the proceeds of which were provided to Bristol City Football Club for the construction of a new stadium.

Christopher Hill brings 20 years worth of senior level experience to Hargreaves Lansdown

Mr. Hill clears his desk at IG Group for the last time on October 30, and will remain employed by IG Group until early February 2016, at which point he will have completed his notice period, or until the time at which he takes up his new position.

Mr. Hill will receive his salary equivalent to his full notice period, and IG Group is already engaged in the search for a replacement for Mr Hill.

Having joined IG Group as CFO in April 2011, Mr. Hill has an extensive career in accountancy within financial services companies. His previous position was as CFO at deliverable FX firm Travelex, where he spent two years and eight months, a role which was preceded by a year and a half as Finance Director for the UK and Ireland at VWR International.

Going back to the beginning of the millenium, Mr. Hill spent five years at GE Capital in various executive positions, after six years at consultancy firm Arthur Andersen, a company that he joined in 1993.

Mr. Hill has an MA in Modern History from Oxford University’s Keble College, and was privately educated at one of the UK’s most respected educational institutions, Cheltenham College.

Read this next

Uncategorized

US and South Korea seek extradition of Luna founder Do Kwon

Both US and South Korean officials are seeking to extradite Terraform Labs CEO Do Kwon, just hours after he was arrested in Montenegro.

Retail FX

Pepperstone UK doubles profit, client assets in 2022

The London-based entity of Australian FX broker Pepperstone has reported its financials for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2022. The group had outperformed the last year’s flat performance, having doubled revenues and boosted the broker’s bottom line and shareholders’ fortunes.

Institutional FX

CLS FX volume rises to just shy of $2 trillion in February

Foreign exchange settlement provider, CLS Group saw strong volumes in February 2023 as the banking crisis continues to weigh on a world economy that’s yet to fully recover from the Russia-Ukraine war’s shocks.

Digital Assets

Binance restores trading after 2-hour outage

Binance suffered a breakdown on its trading engine that lasted for about two hours, but the premier cryptocurrency exchange finally managed to restore normal operations at around 14:00 UTC.

Digital Assets

Tether earns $700 million in Q1, taking excess reserves to $1.6 billion

Tether chief technology officer Paolo Ardoino said the world’s largest stablecoin issuer expects to earn more than $700 million in the January-Mach quarter, which will be added to the reserve backing its stablecoin (USDT).

Digital Assets

Narwhal Finance Secures $1M in Seed Funding Led by Animoca Ventures

Narwhal Finance received strong support from Animoca Ventures and angel investors in a $1 million seed funding round, reinforcing the company’s vision of providing an accessible platform to all.

Technology

SteelEye tries ChatGPT for market surveillance

This capability can be used as a starting point for initiating a surveillance investigation and to standardize workflow processes to boost the throughput and consistency of cases. It is also useful when analyzing communications in foreign languages, as the system returns the above insights in English regardless of the languages being used.

Industry News

SEC charges ex-Morgan Stanley advisor of NBA players after $13m fraud

Darryl Matthew Cohen was arrested this week and is facing three different federal counts of fraud, which could amount to 20 years in prison if convicted, besides the SEC complaint. 

Industry News

AWS FinTech Africa Accelerator launched, applications until April 27, 2023

Founders will be offered tech resources, expert guidance, and a global network of industry leaders, technologists, entrepreneurs, investors, associations, and partners, in order to build their fintech products. 

<