Butcher: Disappointed so few women applied to join the IGC
Hargreaves Lansdown has appointed three new members to its Independent Governance Committee (IGC).
This follows the planned departure of three members and the appointment of PTL managing director Richard Butcher as chairman of its IGC earlier this year.
The new members are Rita Bajaj and Ian Costain – both independent members – and Mark Walter, a Hargreaves Lansdown employee member.
Helen Carey, an independent member since 2016, will continue in her role. The IGC now has four independent members and one HL employee member (previous 3:2).
The Hargreaves Lansdown IGC is responsible for overseeing the value for money received by HL Workplace Self-Invested Personal Pension (SIPP) members and drawdown pathways investors.
Commenting on the appointments, HL IGC chairman Richard Butcher said: “I’m delighted that Mark Walter, Rita Bajaj and Ian Costain have agreed to join the IGC. We conducted a very thorough process designed to ensure we had a robust set of skills, experience and knowledge and that we had the cognitive diversity needed to generate constructive debate amongst ourselves and challenge to Hargreaves Lansdown. They will really compliment the rest of the team. We’re all looking forward to getting on with the work now.
“If I am disappointed about one aspect of the process we went through, it is that, despite our best efforts, we had so few women apply to join the IGC. Fortunately, those that did were highly qualified and so Rita will join Helen Carey, who I’m delighted to say has agreed to stay on the IGC.”
The biographies of HL’s IGC members are as follows
Chairman: Richard Butcher (I) is managing director of PTL. He is also chair of the Pensions and Lifetime Savings Association and has over 30 years’ experience in pension governance. Richard is driven to help deliver value for money and great outcomes for savers.
Rita Bajaj (I) is a financial services consultant with over 25 years’ broad industry experience. She has held senior investment positions at global and UK asset managers, such as Royal London and Invesco Perpetual. She also served as EMEA chief administrative officer at State Street and is a former Financial Conduct Authority regulator. Rita is passionate about improving retirement outcomes and value for money for members, including sustainable investing and ESG considerations. She is also a chartered financial analyst (CFA).
Helen Carey (I) is Compliance & Operations Director at AV Trinity. She has over 20 years’ experience working in a variety of roles in the pensions industry, including workplace pensions. This includes supporting employers when making important decisions for their members and directly advising scheme members pre and post retirement. Helen is passionate about good member outcomes and financial education, having played an active role in improving financial understanding in schools and in the workplace. Helen is a chartered financial adviser and a fellow of the Personal Finance Society.
Ian Costain (I) has been an independent consultant for over 10 years. During this time he has had a particular focus on pension policy and has done advisory assignments at both the Financial Conduct Authority and The Pensions Regulator. Ian’s career is grounded on the commercial side of the pensions industry with extensive experience of product development and proposition management. Ian’s thinking begins and ends with the customer but, at the same time, he believes that efficient well-managed companies should be allowed to make a profit. Ian is an actuary by profession.
Mark Walter (HL Employee Member) joined Hargreaves Lansdown in 2010. He is responsible for managing HL’s relationships with the fund management companies available through the HL platform. He has extensive experience of HL’s operational, commercial, and client-facing functions, enabling him to bring a rounded view to assessing value for money within workplace pensions and investment pathways, as well as how ESG is integrated into investing. Mark is passionate about expanding access to financial services. Mark holds the diploma in regulated financial planning.