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Peter Hargreaves to step down as Hargreaves Lansdown chief executive

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

Hargreaves is planning to step down following November’s AGM with chief operating officer Ian Gorham set to take on the role.

Hargreaves co-founded the firm with Stephen Lansdown in 1981. Hargreaves Lansdown floated in May 2007 and currently has a market cap of approximately £1.75bn.

He says: “At the end of the day I am 63 years old and if you saw the Times richlist yesterday it’s fair to say that I am not as hungry as I once was. Over the last five or six years I’ve known that as I get older I would need to ensure that the business is run in perpetuity as we’d rather that was the case than if it was sold, hence floating the business in 2007.

“I now have a raft of younger people who not only can run the business but they do run business and I feel their hunger is greater and I am going to give them a chance.”

Hargreaves says he is going to remain an executive director and says he has no plans to retire.

Gorham joined Hargreaves Lansdown in September 2009 as chief operating officer and Hargreaves says he has shown everyone that he is the ideal person to take on the role. Gorham was named deputy CEO with immediate effect.

Hargreaves says: “He has had an interesting career prior to Hargreaves Lansdown having built a financial services practice for Deloitte and then did the same for Grant Thornton. He wanted a new challenge and we knew him for a number of years and he will take over at the end of the year. We’ve worked together for eight months and I think he is the right man to come to the fore.”

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Comments

There are 12 comments at the moment, we would love to hear your opinion too.

  1. A wise man too because if the FSA get wind of the HL “execution only” SIPP there will be some questions!

    As a compliant IFA I have been jumping through regulatory hoops when conducting transfer business. Accepted compliance advice says the FSA will not accept “execution only” pension advice let alone transfers into SIPP’s conducted as “execution only” and yet clear as daylight HL are soliciting millions into their SIPP funds and all on a tick of a box and all based on one clause 5 of their application -the “execution only” clause.

    HL say they have not given any advice.
    No advice? Have you seen the newsletter that comes with this mail shot extolling the advantages of the HL Vantage SIPP.

    Is this “another” case of the FSA asleep on their watch or is it that there is some secret pack with the regulators and HL– but compliant, it is not!

  2. Ditto to Anonymous 5.33 pm

    And there’s more…

  3. You must be joking 26th April 2010 at 6:54 pm

    There’s nothing like sour grapes to spoil a very decent vintage (or should that be vantage?)

    In direct contradiction to Mr/Mrs Anon. above, I would like to wish Peter all the very best for the future.

    HL have built a fantastic business, based on a very simple concept – “no matter what the FSA say – we still live in a democracy, where people have a choice”.

    All this fuss about Wraps/Platforms/SIPPs is a nonsense… HL have been offering these “products” for years and at a very very competitive charge – economies of scale and all that.

    Lets remember that all these “products” are just a nominee service and a back office system.

    I’d put one question to Mr/Mrs A… when you did you platform due diligence – did you include “vantage” as a possibility?

    If not, why not?

  4. Perhaps the FSA agree with me that HL “execution only” at a reasonable price is better than some of the expensive advice being given by some advisers.

    There is a market segment that does not want advice and does not want to pay for advice. HL handle this segment very well.

  5. Incompetent Regulators Award Team 26th April 2010 at 10:50 pm

    I concur with Anon 26th Arr 2010 5.33pm.

    I recently lost a case to HL when I offered to give my potential client to rebate all my renewals, only 2.5% up front fee from transfer with an average of 1.5% AMC with a wrapper style scheme. He was hoodwinked by HL with no up front entry fee but AMCs which went up to 2.75%. And to cap it he used my Transfer Analysis Report to make his decision which I gave him free of charge. I know he took the Execution Only route as I’d done the dirty work. The FSA should do some digging, but I won’t hold my breath as they are the problems to all of our regulatory woes.

  6. Robert Donaldson 27th April 2010 at 9:33 am

    Perhaps the above is a case of why you should have charged a fee for the work you were doing rather than relying on commission. I would have suggested a flat rate fee for the analysis at least.

    You took a bet that they would do the business with you and you lost tough cookie!

  7. Another Anon IFA 27th April 2010 at 9:34 am

    Good luck to him. I wish I could retire gracefully. I fear I will still be doing this until I reach 75,

    Now, I have to effectively re qualify to even continue to advise. I certainly will not be recommending this industry to anyone who values their sanity and peace of mind.

    The fun seemed to go out of the job some years ago (can’t say exactly when, as it has been a bit insidious) and when once I used to talk to colleagues regularly about current issues and thoughts and ideas, I rarely see colleagues at all any more from one day to the next, since most of the providers have cut their broker salesforces and operate via the internet or phone from some obscure location (sometime even in India!). Since a lot of the meeting and events used to be sponsored by the providers. (I fear even if there were meetings, this would be a much too frivolous waste of time, in the modern environment!)

    No it is not the same and I wonder if the people we used to see to talk about their future plans and goals are still around either.

    After 10 years plus of a Labour Gvt where they have effectively dismantled a very successful financial services industry. You could argue that it was the clients paying for all this fun and frivolity, but they also benefited from a more vibrant industry which was able to provide advice to the whole community and also make a profit.

    I fear for the future of ‘advice’ to all and everyone who works in our industry and sense that whilst there may be lots of choice in the new order, there will be no one out there to give it, apart that is from the banks and big players operating on volume sales, no advice and unsupportable profit margins for the average IFA. a little like HL I suppose. Lovely ! long live the revolution!!! Now.. where are all those little corner shops we used l to love and hate.

  8. It constantly makes me laugh when I hear IFA’s whingeing about Hargreaves Lansdown.

    Let face it. Most people who use HL are clued up and probably don’t need to use an IFA anyway because they can make investment decisions themselves and save the cost of using an IFA.

    I personally use HL to run my SIPP and I can state that their customer service is fantastic, and they action any request promptly.

    A lot of IFA’s could learn a thing or two by observing HL instead of moaning about them.

  9. I completely agree with Neil. They are very good at correcting any errors and apologising if they get it wrong.

  10. ONE RULE FOR ALL EVEN HL SIPPS 28th April 2010 at 10:38 pm

    I am annoyed by the daft comments by John Blackmore 8.41 pm and “You must be Joking” at 6.54 pm plus one or two fellow lodge members! They are missing the point. The regulators are quite clear on this point – NO EXECUTION ONLY for pension transfers, let alone transfers into SIPPs that have only recently come under regulatory scrutiny. It matters not what a nice chap Peter is! If an IFA is handicapped through an expensive advice and compliance process then the same process must be applied to all. For those of you who can remember, the Prudential tried such a disclaimer and it was swept away with the pension review. ONE RULE FOR ALL IF YOU PLEASE MR REGULATOR!

  11. Can I have a slice of HL execution only pie? 28th April 2010 at 10:49 pm

    I would like to waive the requirement to conduct eights hours compliance work and then worry about retrospective reviews for the rest of my life and £100K fines without any right of appeal and all because i gave advice to my client. For sure I’d even waive initial commission in exchange for a client indemnity as HL do, but I can’t and I doubt HL can either – so maybe its a matter of time. That does not mean I agree with the regulator but it does mean that I’ll be dammed if I’m forced to compete with HL with both hands tied behind my back. So Mr & Mrs FSA go take a look at HL clause No.5 and see if it stacks up and if it does do let me know because I’ll have a slice of that “execution only” cake.

  12. Northern Rock School of Regulation 28th April 2010 at 10:57 pm

    It seems to me we have several clients on here saying they are happy with the HL execution only route. They may well be and HL may also be a fine business model. Most IFA’s would agree if they also were allowed to use “execution only” but they are not and nor is HL. Simple fact of compliance life – ask any compliance officer in the land – so where is the regulation???????

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