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Hargreaves stepping down as chief executive

Hargreaves: Staying on as executive director
Hargreaves: Staying on as executive director

Hargreaves Lansdown founder Peter Hargreaves is to step down as chief executive this year.

As revealed on, he is planning to step down after the firm’s AGM in November, with chief operating officer Ian Gorham set to take over as chief executive. Gorham has been appointed deputy chief executive with immediate effect.

Hargreaves says he intends to remain as an executive director and has no plans to retire.

He co-founded the firm with Stephen Lansdown in 1981. Hargreaves Lansdown was floated in May 2007 and has a market capitalisation of £1.75bn.

Last year, Stephen Lansdown retired as chairman but has remained an executive director with responsibilities for operations.

Hargreaves says: “Over the last five or six years, I have known that as I get older I will need to ensure the business is run in perpetuity as we would rather that was the case than if it was sold, hence floating the business in 2007.” Gorham joined Hargreaves Lansdown in September 2009 from Grant Thornton where he was a partner and head of the firm’s financial services group.

Hargreaves says: “Ian Gorham wanted a new challenge and we knew him for a number of years. We have worked together for eight months and I think he is the right man to come to the fore.” Schroders managing director of UK intermediary business Robin Stoakley says: “Peter has been the most influential player in the mutual fund industry for a number of years while the firm has done more for investors than any other.”

Life and times of Hargreaves Lansdown

1981: Hargreaves Lansdown formed by Peter Hargreaves and Stephen Lansdown to provide personal advice to clients on unit trusts and tax planning.
1986: Discretionary management service launched.
1987: Own Pep introduced.
1991: Hargreaves Lansdown Stockbrokers formed.
1994: HL Fund Managers is formed to provide a managed portfolio of investment trusts.
1996: Hargreaves Lansdown goes ’full discount’ on unit trusts and Oeics for clients making their own investment decisions. The firm teams up with Royal Bank of Scotland to offer preferential cash account facilities to clients.
1999: Hargreaves Lansdown Pensions Direct is formed. Launch of HL corporate solutions.
2000: Launch of annuity supermarket.
2001: Launch of first fund in multi-manager fund range – now called the HL multi-manager balanced managed trust. Rebranded self-select Pep and Isa service as HL Vantage service.
2002: Discretionary services becomes portfolio management service.
2003: Launch of the HL Vantage Sipp account.
2007: Hargreaves Lansdown floats on the stockmarket, with 25 per cent of shares made available to institutions, employees and existing clients.
2009: Stephen Lansdown steps down as chairman in November but remains as executive director.
2010: Peter Hargreaves announces intention to step down as chief executive but remain as executive director.


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