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Hargreaves chief exec Gorham sells £3.35m stake

Hargreaves Lansdown chief executive Ian Gorham has sold 750,000 shares in the company worth £3.35m.

Gorham (pictured) sold the shares at the end of a three-year lock-in period in the company’s joint share ownership plan and has already reinvested almost half of the return back into Hargreaves Lansdown, purchasing 225,000 shares at 714.8p per share. The £1.6m stake equates to 0.05 per cent of ordinary Hargreaves Lansdown shares in issue.

The joint share ownership plan started in December 2009 when each share had a value of 268.8p. At conclusion of the lock-in period earlier this week, the shares were sold at 714.8p. Gorham, corporate and pension managing director Alex Davies and group finance director Tracy Taylor each received 447 pence per share in respect of their interests in the shares.

Taylor had 1,000,000 shares, while Davies had 333,333 shares. Taylor and Davies’ shares were worth £4.5m and £1.5m respectively.

Gorham replaced founder Peter Hargreaves as chief executive of Hargreaves Lansdown in 2010. He joined Hargreaves Lansdown in September 2009 as chief operating officer.

Earlier this month, broker Galvan Research and Trading recommended selling Hargreaves Lansdown.

Galvan Research says that while the Hargreaves Lansdown business model does to some extent justify the shares trading at a premium to traditional asset managers, the regulatory uncertainty from the RDR could as yet impact significantly on the model and therefore the share price. The group said it will test for support at around 700p.

Galvan is the latest broker to raise concern about Hargreaves Lansdown’s position due to the RDR. In October, Citi downgraded Hargreaves Lansdown to a sell. At the time, it said: “HL will need to announce and implement a new Vantage paid-for business model during 2013. We see this as potentially disruptive to new business flows and ‘normal’ operations.”

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