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WHO WE ARE

A not-for-profit, practitioner-led membership organisation, set up by institutional investors in UK Equities. The Forum’s purpose is to position stewardship at the heart of investment decision-making by facilitating dialogue, creating long-term solutions and enhancing value.

Enhancing the practice of stewardship

Our approach is:
  • Value-driven: we base collective engagement on economic rationale
  • Discreet: we avoid unnecessary public confrontation
  • Safe: we limit the legal and regulatory risks
  • Constructive: we identify solutions
  • Methodical: we have a consistent and robust process
  • Best practice: we seek to enhance stewardship by investors and boards alike
We help investors:
  • Realise long-term benefits for their clients
  • Maximise their return on engagement effort
  • Be confident that collective engagements will be safe, secure and discreet
  • Demonstrate their commitment to stewardship activities to all stakeholders
  • Contribute to the long-term success of UK-listed companies for the benefit of the broader economy

OUR PURPOSE

The Forum’s purpose is to position stewardship at the heart of investment decision-making by facilitating dialogue, creating long-term solutions and enhancing value.

Our History

  • 2012
  • 2013
  • 2014
  • 2015
  • 2016
  • 2017
  • 2018
  • 2019
  • 2020
  • 2021
  • 2012

    The Kay Review of UK equity markets and long-term decision-making recommended that “an investors’ forum should be established to facilitate collective engagements by UK investors in UK companies”.

  • 2013

    A Collective Engagement Working Group was formed, and concluded that the Investor Forum should be established.

  • 2014

    The Investor Forum was established as a not-for- profit member organisation. Simon Fraser and Andy Griffiths were appointed as Chairman and Executive Director respectively.

  • 2015

    The focus of the first year was identifying a membership base, and proving the concept for the collective engagement model. Four full engagements were completed: Standard Chartered plcTate & Lyle plcRolls Royce plc and Sports Direct plc.

  • 2016

    The “Collective Engagement Framework” was published, with support from a panel of legal advisers. The founding 20 asset managers and asset owners committed financial support for a period of three years, and total Membership grew to 33. Three full engagements were reported: Cobham plcMitie Group plc, and Royal Dutch Shell plc. The Forum collaborated with EY in a project to Improve the Reporting of Long-Term Value.

  • 2017

    Membership increased to 35. Seven full engagements were reported, including BT Group plcLondon Stock Exchange plcRio Tinto plc and Worldpay plc. Significant projects in the year including Working Practices in the Apparel Sector and the BankingFutures Pathway to Long-term Value.

  • 2018

    Member numbers grew to 43. Six full engagements were reported, including Centrica plcReckitt Benckiser plcShire plc and Unilever plc. Projects in the year including Working Practices in the Food Sector and ADR Voting Practices.

  • 2019

    Membership reached 50. Six full engagements were reported, including First Group plc, Imperial Brands plc and Vodafone plc. Projects in the year included The Four Dialogues, Working Practices in the Construction Sector and Setting Standards to address Marine Plastic Pollution. An update to the Collective Engagement Framework was published in September 2019.

  • 2020

    Membership reached 52. Eleven full engagements are reported, including Aviva plc, Barclays plc, Pearson plc and SSP Group plc. Significant projects include; Promoting Well-Functioning Markets; Voting Transparency; the Four O’clock Forum series.

  • 2021

    Membership reached 56. Six reported Engagements – Including BT Group plc, HSBC Group plc. Significant projects include: Governing for Growth; Irish voting turnout; Stakeholder Capitalism

Kay Review obstacles to long-term engagement:
  • A decline of trust and misalignment of incentives throughout the equity investment chain.
  • Fragmentation has reduced the incentives for engagement and the level of control.
  • Internationalisation of ownership with 54% of UK market now owned by international investors.
  • Perceived regulatory barriers inhibit collective engagement.
  • A narrow engagement focus has crowded out discussion on fundamental drivers of long-term strategy and operational execution.

Taken together, this has contributed to an industry structure which too often favours exit over voice.

THE KAY REVIEW

BOARD OF DIRECTORS

The independent Board of Directors is elected each year by the Forum’s Members at the Annual General Meeting.
The Board oversees the work of the Forum’s executive officers.

Michael McLintock | Oct 2021

Chair

Michael is Chair of Associated British Foods plc. Michael retired from M&G in 2016 having joined the company in 1992 and been appointed Chief Executive in 1997. In 1999 he oversaw the sale of M&G to Prudential plc where he served as an Executive Director from 2000 until 2016. He is also a Trustee of the Grosvenor Estate, Chair of Grosvenor Group Limited, and a member of the Takeover Appeal Board. He was a Director of Close Brothers Group from 2001-2008 and a member of the Finance Committee of MCC from 2005-2018.

Amra Balic | Dec 2020

Amra leads BlackRock’s investment stewardship efforts in EMEA on behalf of clients globally, and is a member of BlackRock’s Global Operating Committee and EMEA Executive Investments Committee. Amra joined BlackRock in 2011 after 11 years with S&P Global, where she was a Director in European Corporate Credit Ratings. Amra is also a Director of Eumedion, a Dutch investor association, a Trustee of the ECGRF, and is on the IA Corporate Governance and Engagement Committee. Previously Amra was a member of the European Commission Expert Group and the PLSA (UK) Stewardship Advisory Group.

Ruth Beechey | March 2022

Ruth is Chief of Staff at UBS Global Asset Management UK, where she has worked for 22 years.  She is a Director of UBSAM UK’s main portfolio management entity and the UK based Life company.  She is also Trustee director of the UBS Pension Fund and sits on the Community impact Forum for UBS , London.  As a qualified lawyer,  her previous roles include being Legal Counsel at UBS and Morgan Grenfell.  Ruth is also a member of the Investment Association’s Strategy and Risk committee.

Sir Peter Gershon | Jan 2018

Sir Peter has held senior executive and non-executive positions in public and private companies in healthcare, technology, defence and telecommunications industries. His previous senior board level appointments include Chair of National Grid plc, Chair of Premier Farnell plc, Chair of Tate & Lyle plc and Managing Director of Marconi Electronic Systems. Sir Peter also has experience of the public sector through his appointment as Chief Executive of the Office of Government Commerce and leading 3 independent reviews for the UK Government. He is currently chairman of the Dreadnought Alliance and enfinium Limited.

Andrew Millington | Dec 2020

Andrew is Head of UK Equities at abrdn. Andrew was previously a UK and European equity portfolio fund manager at ASI, after starting his career at Baillie Gifford. He is a Trustee of Cattanach, a Scottish grant making charity. Andrew is a member of the IA Investment Committee.

Robert Swannell | Dec 2014

Robert is a member of the Takeover Appeal Board. Until September 2021, Robert was Chair of UK Government Investments, which is the centre of excellence for corporate finance and corporate governance for HMG and was also previously Chair of Marks & Spencer plc. Robert spent over 30 years in investment banking with Schroders/Citigroup and was on the board of both British Land Company plc and 3i Group plc.

Andy Griff‌iths | Sep 2014

Executive Director

Andy has over 25 years of international investment experience. Before setting up the Investor Forum in 2014, Andy was a senior investment professional at Capital Group and M&G. Throughout his career, Andy has been responsible for financial sector investments and was consistently  ranked among leading equity investors in Europe. Andy was also an Operating Partner with Corsair Capital. Andy is a Trustee of the MOE Foundation, a charity that delivers training and coaching to young people.

Edward Bonham Carter | Dec 2014

Senior Independent Director

Edward was previously Vice Chairman, CEO, Chief Investment Officer and UK fund manager at Jupiter Fund Management plc, before becoming Director of Stewardship & Corporate Responsibility in May 2021 when he stepped down from the Jupiter Board. He chairs both the CSR and Stewardship Committees at Jupiter and his role supports the work of the CIO office and the Governance and Sustainability team. Previously he worked at Schroders and Electra Investment Trust. He is currently Senior Independent Director of Land Securities Group plc and ITV plc, Chairman of Netwealth Investments, a Trustee of the Esmée Fairbairn Foundation and is on the Strategic Advisory Board of Livingbridge.

Alex Edmans | May 2022

Alex is Professor of Finance at London Business School who focuses on corporate finance, responsible business and behavioural finance. Alex is a Fellow of the European Corporate Governance Institute and a member of Royal London Asset Management’s Responsible Investment Advisory Committee. He gave the TED talk “What to Trust in a Post-Truth World” and the TEDx talks “The Social Responsibility of Business” and “The Pie-Growing Mindset”. He is the author of “Grow the Pie: How Great Companies Deliver Both Purpose and Profit” and co-author of “Principles of Corporate Finance” with Brealey, Myers, and Allen. Poets & Quants named him Professor of the Year for 2021.

Anne Marie Fleurbaaij | Oct 2019

Anne Marie is the Managing Director of Marketable Assets at Cambridge Investment Management Ltd, the manager of the Cambridge University Endowment Fund. Previously, she spent 12 years as a Portfolio Manager with GIC (London), a sovereign wealth fund. Prior to this, she was a Vice- President at Morgan Stanley Investment Management and began her career at Deloitte. She is a co-Chair of the Board of Trustees to Girls Are Investors and is an Ambassador to the Diversity Project.

Jessica Ground | Jan 2017

Since 2020 Jessica has been the Global Head of ESG at Capital Group. Prior to this, she was the Global Head of Stewardship at Schroders where she was previously a fund manager and an analyst covering Financials and Utilities on a pan-European and Global basis. Jessica is a member of the Code Committee for the Takeover Panel.

Luba Nikulina | Apr 2019

Luba is Global Head of Research at Willis Towers Watson, responsible for the global team of more than a hundred investment professionals conducting economic and capital markets research, evaluating asset management firms in a variety of different asset classes, coming up with investment recommendations and creating new investment solutions for asset owners.

Chantal Waight | Dec 2020

Chantal is the Director of Strategy and Corporate Development at M&G plc. Chantal was previously an equity analyst, and more recently, the Director of Investor Relations at Prudential plc, where she led investor communications through the merger and transformation of M&G Investments and Prudential UK&E and the demerger of M&G from Prudential plc. She is also on the Board of the M&G Trustee Company Limited.

THE TEAM

Andy Griffiths

Executive Director

Andy has over 25 years of international investment experience as a top rated investment professional at Capital Group and M&G. Throughout his career Andy has been responsible for financial sector investments and has consistently been ranked among the leading equity investors in Europe. Andy was also an Operating Partner with Corsair Capital until the end of 2017.

Andy is a former Fulbright Commissioner, sits on the UnLtd Ventures Advisory Board and is a trustee of MoE.

FULL BIO

Victoria Sant

Managing Director

Victoria initially joined the Investor Forum on secondment from the Wellcome Trust, where she managed the external equity manager portfolio for ten years.

Victoria is a member of the investment committee of the National Trust, and a Non-Executive Director of the Henderson Smaller Companies Investment Trust. She is also an advisory board member at Ownership Capital B.V and Chair of the Investment Committee  at the Global Crop Diversity Trust. Previously, she was an investment consultant at LCP.

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Fiona Ellard

Senior Adviser

Fiona has over 30 years of investment and corporate governance experience. Fiona joined the Forum in September 2017 from BlackRock where she was COO of the BlackRock Investment Institute, Deputy Chair of the Americas Investment Stewardship Committee and previously had senior product strategist roles in the EM and UK Equity teams. Fiona began her career at UBS Asset Management where she was a UK equity portfolio manager.

Fiona is a fellow of the Chartered Securities Institute.

FULL BIO

Tim Shanagher

Senior Adviser

Tim has over 30 years of investment experience, advising and trading for international corporate clients and institutional investors. Working in Equity Research and Distribution at W.I. Carr, he was subsequently a director and board member of Schroder Securities and was instrumental in the sale of their Japanese business to Credit Suisse. Most recently he was head of research for Credit Suisse in Japan and co-head of APAC distribution in Europe.

Tim Is Strategic Adviser to Hyde Park Partners and is an investment research consultant at Quaero Capital LLP.

FULL BIO

Susan Sternglass Noble

Senior Adviser

Susan has extensive investment experience having held senior roles at Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan, CQS and AXA Framlington. She has been a Specialist Adviser to the Treasury Select Committee of the House of Commons and a Commissioner on the Dormant Assets Commission.

Susan is currently a Non-Executive Director of Unity Trust Bank and Asia Dragon Trust and is a Trustee of Link Age Southwark.

FULL BIO

Guy Walker

Senior Adviser

Guy has over 25 years investment and corporate finance experience. He was a UK & European equities portfolio manager at UBS and prior to that was Global Head of ESG Investment at Schroders.

Guy is a qualified pension trustee director and was board director on Schroders pension fund.

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Laura Devonshire

Finance & Operations Manager

Laura joined the Forum in 2019 . Laura has 17 years experience in Business Operations roles with Microsoft UK Ltd and EY UK LLP.
Laura’s experience includes business systems implementation, process management, resourcing deployment, management information and training.

FULL BIO

Vy Nguyen

Stewardship Analyst

After interning at the UNHCR London, Vy joined the Forum in Jan 2021, driven by a combined interest in sustainability and the investment management industry. As a Stewardship Analyst, she assists Senior Advisers in collective engagements and researches for ESG projects.

FULL BIO

Maido Richards

Events & Office Manager

Maido joined the Forum in 2016 after 11 years at the Investment Association where she held a number of different roles; and had most recently responsibility for all activities supporting annual membership for over 200 member accounts.

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CAREERS

Thank you for your interest. We have no live vacancies at the moment.

For any queries, please contact us at:  info@investorforum.org.uk

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