Blog Type, Fellowship Blog, Fellowship Type, Sector based Fellowships, Industry Sector, Finance | August 2013

Financial Services Fellowship: Alun Cairns MP

Alun Cairns MP for Vale of Glamorgan began a Fellowship in 2011 in the Financial Services sector looking at corporate and retail banking, private equity and venture capital, wealth management and insurance. Alun’s time was divided between Aberdeen Asset Management, Barclays, BP Marsh, Brewin Dolphin, HSBC, Nationwide, Silicon Valley Bank, Standard Life Investments, and St James Place Wealth Management.

Following on from the financial crash of 2008 there has been great upheaval across the sector along with a range of new legislative measures looking to prevent a repeat of the crisis. Alun was keen to gain an insight into existing challenges, as well as understanding the impact of the banking reform legislation on not only banks, but the rest of the sector. In an environment of such significant change it was important for Alun to gain an insight into other areas of the financial services industry, as well as banks.

Alun’s experience working in retail banking prior to his role as an Assembly Member in Wales and subsequent election to Parliament, provided a great sounding board for his placements and allowed him to refresh and develop his understanding of a business and legislative area that he wanted to focus on in the House of Commons.

“The IPT Scheme offered an excellent opportunity to gain a real life experience of the industry. At a time when there has been so much controversy in the sector and with legislation before Parliament, such experience was crucial to my contribution to the debate".

Alun Cairns MP

The Company View

"Alun Cairns spent four days with us at Brewin Dolphin – spread between time in London with the Board, with some of our Investment Managers and our Regulation & Risk Department and in our branch office in his constituency in Wales. We certainly found having Alun here a very useful experience; it helped us understand the concerns of MPs about investor protection and the levels and costs of regulation being considered during the passage of the Financial Services Bill in 2011/12. He gave us the opportunity to consider how best to balance the various objectives and how to respond to other MPs and Parliamentary Committees with our views and we hope he found it just as helpful”.

Brewin Dolphin

“Alun was keen to learn more about the asset management industry, including both retail and institutional investment. We pulled together an extensive programme for Alun which included some time with our Chief Executive, along with various fund managers and directors from our corporate governance and risk and compliance teams. Following the visit, Alun remarked that he had a much better understanding of the issues facing investment management firms, while from our perspective it was a good opportunity to demonstrate the important stewardship role that we perform on behalf of our clients and to highlight the vital contribution that our industry makes to the economy and to society more broadly”.

Standard Life
Interested in hosting an MP or Peer for a day as part of an IPT Fellowship? We are always looking for new host organisations from across all of the UK. To find out more about how to get involved in an IPT Fellowship, please contact:

Liz Dawson

Parliamentary Affairs Manager

0207 839 9405

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The IPT Fellowships Team

For more information on the Fellowship programme please contact a member of the Fellowship team:

Elizabeth Dawson

Parliamentary Affairs Manager

0207 839 9405

Alex Reeves

Parliamentary Affairs Officer

0207 839 9412

Radhika Madlani

Parliamentary Affairs Officer

0207 839 9404