Revolut mixes ultra-modern with decades of experience as Martin Gilbert becomes first Chairman

Revolut may well have disrupted the entire traditional banking and investment sector, but its choice of chairman represents decades of interbank and asset management expertise

Prominent London-based challenger bank Revolut may well be very much part of the new direction in electronic, app-led banking and financial services, however the company is beginning to mix its modernity with absolute tradition and institutional expertise.

The number of challenger banks in London has absolutely skyrocketed over recent months, many of the new contenders to traditional banks being led by astute, young former senior technologists or interbank FX executives with a will to disrupt the traditional methods of banking and offer a dynamic, fast and much cheaper method of international interaction with corporate or personal finances than the creaking, loss-making and real estate-heavy high street banks.

For Revolut, one of the initial disruptors in the retail and corporate banking sector, a balance between innovative new methods of banking and references to the expertise of the traditional investment management and banking industry has been struck as the firm has appointed its very first Chairman, Martin Gilbert.

Martin Gilbert (right) with Keith Skeoch in March this year

Mr Gilbert, aged 64, represents a distant disparity from the upstarts who have entered the new age of banking, and has an entire career within the upper echelons of the asset management industry behind him spanning four decades.

His most recent board position saw him serving as vice chairman of Standard Life Aberdeen and chairman of Aberdeen Standard Investments, and he has also served as CEO of Aberdeen Asset Management, an international investment management company, which he co-founded in 1983. He was chairman of FirstGroup from 1 April 1995 to 1 January 2014, four years after becoming a patron of The Aberdeen Law Project in 2010.

Mr Gilbert co-founded Aberdeen Asset Management in 1983, which he operated for several decades, and in 2014 he received an honorary doctorate from Heriot-Watt University and was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh in 2017.

In March 2017, a merger between Standard Life and Aberdeen Asset Management was announced. At the time, the merger created the UK’s largest asset management firm, and the second biggest in Europe.

In March 2019, Mr Gilbert stepped down as co-CEO of Standard Life Aberdeen.

At the time, Standard Life Aberdeen stated that its board had appointed 62-year-old Keith Skeoch, former Standard Life chief, as sole chief executive of the company.

Mr Gilbert, who led Aberdeen Asset Management for 34 years before becoming co-chief executive of the merged company, then took on the role of vice-chairman of Standard Life Aberdeen.

The co-CEO structure had come under pressure in recent months in light of what had been considered to be continued poor performance since the merger, which was aimed at staunching outflows from the two companies.

Mr Gilbert said he pushed for Keith Skeoch steer the ship on his own after he had already had “a great run” as a CEO. “After 35 years, 9 months and 13 days, I’d done it long enough,” he said, adding: “I wanted to get back to what I felt I was good at, which was the clients.”

Read this next

Digital Assets shuts down its US institutional exchange has announced plans to discontinue its institutional exchange service for professional customers in the United States as soon as June 21.

Retail FX

ThinkMarkets launches copy trading platform ‘ThinkCopy’

Melbourne-based broker, ThinkMarkets has introduced ThinkCopy, a copy trading platform that aims to provide clients with access to experienced traders and a range of social features.

Retail FX

Robinhood delists Solana, Cardano, and Polygon amid SEC’s crackdown

Commission-free brokerage Robinhood Markets announced on Friday that it would be delisting three crypto tokens from its platform. The decision comes shortly after the U.S. regulators intensified its regulatory actions against major cryptocurrency exchanges.

Digital Assets

US wants Bittrex to settle federal dues before compensating customers

The U.S. government has raised objections to Bittrex’s proposal to compensate its customers, adding to concerns about the resolution of the crypto exchange’s bankruptcy case.

Digital Assets

Binance prepares to suspend US dollar funding after SEC crackdown

Binance.US said it will temporarily suspend US dollar deposits and provided customers with a deadline to withdraw their fiat balances. This decision comes after the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) filed a lawsuit requesting the freezing of Binance’s assets in the country.

Digital Assets

Januar launches real-time payments network to fill gap made by Silvergate and Signature

“To all the entrepreneurs and innovators out there is a clear message: if you are a legitimate European business working with crypto then Januar is here to provide you with the account and payment infrastructure you need to operate successfully and build the financial system of tomorrow.”

Retail FX

Exness’ active clients top 515K as monthly volume hits $3.35 trillion

FX trading volumes are climbing again as economic uncertainty spurred by recent developments over central banks’ policies encouraged speculators to pile back into the market.


Danske Bank plans signficant investment in digital platforms

“We have decided to significantly increase our investments in our digital platforms, expert advisory services and sustainability, focusing on the areas where we see the best opportunities for profitable growth.”

Digital Assets

ERD DeFi Lending Platform and USDE Stablecoin Unveiled at EDCON 2023

ERD, the Ethereum Reserve Dollar, is a decentralized lending platform and stablecoin that aims to provide a capital-efficient, decentralized, and stable solution to the challenges faced by the stablecoin industry, introducing a minimum collateralization ratio of 110% and a robust liquidation mechanism.