Graeme has over 35 years of experience, gained as a leading regulator at the UK’s Financial Services Authority (FSA) and subsequently the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), as well as from working extensively with other regulatory authorities such as the Dutch Central Bank and the UK’s Solicitors Regulation Authority.
Graeme specialises in providing regulatory advice, coaching and training—predominately on conduct regulation—to a range of financial services firms, including major banks and insurance companies. He has provided independent advice on the effectiveness of Boards and Executive Teams, and on organisation-wide governance, culture, systems and control arrangements, policies and procedures.
He has successfully operated within FTSE 100 (Lloyds Bank Plc and NatWest Bank Plc) and Fortune 500 companies (GE Capital, Pitney Bowes and recently BlackRock Inc.), including at Board level. He has also been a senior partner at Alvarez & Marsal, where he established a highly successful Regulatory Consultancy business.
As Director of Authorisation at the FSA/FCA for eight years, he played a key role during the financial crisis and latterly in the creation of the FCA and PRA. He was a core member of key FSA/FCA Executive Committees, for Supervision, Risk, Policy and Diversity. He was Chair of the Regulatory Transactions Committee; Registrar for ‘Mutuals’ (Industrial & Provident/Friendly Societies); and the ultimate decision-maker for all high-profile and complex firms’ permission applications/waivers and Approved Persons applications. Graeme led and implemented the review into ‘Effective Corporate Governance’ after the financial crisis, working closely with Sir David Walker and the Financial Reporting Council in developing the new policies. As the Director responsible for the FSA’s authorisation policy and processes, he implemented the ‘Significant Influence Function’ (SIF) regime and chaired over 650 SIF Interview panels for key Board and C-Suite roles. Graeme directed major new policy initiatives and their associated implementations. He led key workstreams in the creation and formation of the FCA and PRA—designing the revised Supervision and Authorisation policies, processes and procedures, and helping to shape the new strategic approaches.
Previously, Graeme was COO EAME and an Executive Board Director of Pitney Bowes Finance Plc and its 16 European subsidiaries, as well as being Chair of the Audit and Risk Committees. He led a highly successful major transformation programme that restructured the EAME operations and outsourced both the back office and IT functions, resulting in significant cost savings. Prior to this he worked in a number of financial services firms, holding a variety of senior executive roles at NatWest Bank, GE Capital and Lloyds Banking Group.
Selected project experience
- Undertaking ‘Conduct’ reviews for banks, insurance companies and other regulated firms including Treating Customers Fairly, Financial Crime, Compliance and Risk assessments
- Helping UK-based overseas banks and insurance companies to demonstrate regulatory compliance or overcome issues to the satisfaction of regulators
- Supporting regulatory firms in implementing new EU Directives/UK rules
- Conducting Board effectiveness reviews for banks and insurance companies
- Coaching prospective Senior Executives/Board members
- Providing expert witness testimony for both international litigants and defendants
- Providing regulatory application support for all types of firm, including new banks, asset managers and the FCA’s Consumer Credit regime
- Conducting regulatory due diligence for private equity firms acquiring regulated entities
- Facilitating a range of highly complex and significant IT/Operations Programmes/Projects as the overall Sponsor/Lead
- BA (hons) Economics, Psychology and International Politics, University of Warwick