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Massow moves after gay business fears

Millionaire IFA Ivan Massow has defected from the Conservatives to the Labour Party amid speculation that Tory anti-gay rhetoric was hurting his business.

Massow owns London-based IFA Massow Financial Services. He made his millions by selling insurance products to gay men and HIV-positive people who were refused cover from conventional companies.

The high-profile former fund-raiser for the Tories branded the party “less compassionate and more intolerant” as he made the jump to Labour.

He claimed Opposition leader William Hague had surrendered his “principles to the lowest common denominator and appealed to the basest instincts of the electorate”.

New Labour has welcomed Massow, both because of the fund-raising potential he brings and because of the points it allows the party to score against the Opposition.

The Government promptly staged a press conference with Massow and Cabinet Office minister Mo Mowlam to show off its latest star.

The move comes as a blow to the Tories, who have used Massow as an example of their new inclusive attitudes. Although reportedly not close to Hague, Massow says his name appeared on a list of potential candidates for the next general election. Hague has denied this.

In the early days of the London mayoral election, Massow put his name forward as a candidate but withdrew and served as principal policy adviser to Tory candidate Steve Norris.

Massow, 32, is also chairman of the Institute of Contemporary Arts.

Golan/Harris Ludgate financial services policy analyst Jason Evans says: “Massow revolutionised the insurance industry but has failed to make a mark in political life.”

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