Meet the speakers
Hilary Benn MP
Member of Parliament
Hilary Benn has been a Member of Parliament for Leeds Central since 1999. Hilary held a number of ministerial roles in both Tony Blair’s and Gordon Brown’s governments along with roles in subsequent shadow cabinets. After serving as a minister at the Department for International Development and the Home Office, Hilary was appointed to the Cabinet as the Secretary of State for International Development in 2003. From 2007 until 2010, he was Secretary of State for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.
Since 2010, Hilary has held a variety of shadow cabinet posts including Shadow Secretary of State for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs; Shadow Leader of the House of Commons; Shadow Secretary for Communities and Local Government; and Shadow Foreign Secretary. He was voted by his fellow MPs as Minister of the Year in the 2006 and 2007 House Magazine Awards. He also won the Channel 4 Politicians’ Politician Award in 2006.
Company Secretary and General Counsel (Corporate), Royal Dutch Shell plc
Michiel Brandjes is the Company Secretary and General Counsel (Corporate), Royal Dutch Shell plc. Michiel has been with Shell since 1980 and has had the misfortune to have been involved in class action issues, including the worldwide litigation resulting from the misstating of reserves, and therefore has first-hand experience of how these issues affect the in-house lawyer.
Head of Risk Analysis, Pool Re
Ed is Head of Risk Analysis at Pool Re, the Government backed terrorism reinsurance scheme, as well as a Senior Advisor at S-RM, a Business Intelligence and Risk Consulting company. He was formerly Executive Chairman of Salamanca Risk Management and CEO and founder director of a strategic intelligence consultancy. He has extensive experience spanning some 35 years of international relations, counter terrorism, intelligence, security and risk management much of which was gained during 24 years on front line service with the British Army. He was privileged to command 22 SAS over 9/11 and was Commander of British Forces Afghanistan in 2006, before retiring as a Brigadier General in 2008. He has an Honours degree in Politics and International Relations from Exeter University and an MA in Military Technology and Defence Studies from Cranfield University.
Partner, Cravath Swaine and Moore LLP, New York
Tim represents a number of clients in defending against class actions in the US and recently represented Vivendi in a landmark securities class action trial. Tim will be able to give a unique perspective into the trends of US class actions and whether we can expect to see those arriving in the UK.
Managing Director, Strategic Communications & Head of Public Affairs, UK at FTI Consulting
A non-practising barrister and Cambridge graduate, Alex is the former head of a campaigning think tank in Westminster and a former Chief of Staff to David Cameron. He advises a range of companies and organisations and is the author, co-author or editor of several books about law and politics. Alex has trained high-profile individuals and companies to appear before Parliament on a range of issues. He has supported a UK business through a multi-year SFO investigation and counselled a major client through the Leveson Inquiry process.
Alex has also worked with many clients in the legal sector, including the Bar Council, Multilaw, the Federalist Society and the Public Law Project as well as working for and alongside a series of London’s leading solicitors’ firms.
Sir Jonathan Evans KCB
Former Director-General of the British Security Service
Jonathan Evans was head of the British Security Service MI5 from 2007 to 2013. In this role he was also a member of the Prime Minister's National Security Council.
Since leaving government, Jonathan has been a Director of HSBC Holdings, focussing particularly in financial crime and cyber security risk. He is also an advisor to several other companies including Blackdot Solutions, a UK based technology company which offers a unique investigation platform.
General Counsel and Board Director, Lazard & Co.
Robert Farrer-Brown is General Counsel and a Board Director at Lazard & Co., Limited, Lazard's UK investment banking advisory business. He focuses on managing legal, reputational, regulatory and compliance matters relating to Lazard's advisory business conducted out of the UK and a number of other countries.
Recent UK transactions on which Lazard has advised include Anheuser-Busch InBev’s proposed $125 billion acquisition of SABMiller, ARM Holdings’ recommended $32 billion acquisition by SoftBank Group and Royal Dutch Shell’s $81 billion acquisition of BG. Lazard currently ranks second in the 2016 UK announced M&A league table.
Prior to joining Lazard in 2007 Robert worked in the Investment Banking Legal Group at Credit Suisse after having started his career at Linklaters where after qualification as a solicitor he worked in both Linklaters’ litigation and corporate finance departments. He graduated with a First Class BA (Hons) in Modern History from St Johns College, Oxford.
Author and Founder/Chief Executive, Tomorrow's Company
Mark Goyder is an award-winning speaker, writer and broadcaster with over 15 years’ experience as a manager in manufacturing businesses. He is founder and chief executive of Tomorrow’s Company, a London-based business think tank that works with business leaders, investors and policymakers and partners to inspire and enable business to be a force for good in society.
Mark has current advisory roles with Boots Global Brands and Camelot, and has previously worked in such roles with directors of British Airways, British Telecommunications, Camelot and Novo Nordisk. Mark has addressed audiences all over the world. He was awarded the Institute of Management Studies (IMS) Tillers Millennium Trophy for best speaker. He was Director Magazine Director of the Month in June 2004. In a recent column about Mark Goyder’s influence journalist Anthony Hilton described Tomorrow’s Company as “five years ahead of the pack in looking at what is needed in governance terms to make British companies sustainable wealth creators”.
General Counsel, Rolls-Royce plc
Mark Gregory joined Rolls-Royce in 2005 and was appointed General Counsel in October 2015. Before then he held various positions in the Group, most recently as Head of Legal and Commercial. In February 2016, Mark was appointed as a member of the Rolls-Royce Power Systems AG (“RRPS”) Supervisory Board, and sits on the RRPS Audit Committee. Before joining Rolls-Royce, Mark trained and practiced at Lovells (now Hogan Lovells) in London and Hong Kong. He studied English and German law and is a practising Solicitor (England and Wales).
Dave Hartnett was the most senior tax professional in UK tax administration, retiring as Permanent Secretary for Tax in July 2012.
He worked on civil and criminal investigations, policy and technical matters and general operations. In 2000 he joined the Board of Inland Revenue.
Dave led the development of the DOTAS rules. He was a founding Commissioner of The Joint International Tax Shelter Information Centre (JITSIC) to counter cross-border tax avoidance. As Vice Chairman of the OECD Forum of Tax Administration, he took a keen interest in helping developing countries grow their capacity.
Partner, Ondra Partners LLP
Robert joined the Association of British Insurers as Director, Investment Affairs in September 2012 and, following the merger of ABI’s Investment Affairs with the Investment Management Association, acted as a consultant to the enlarged IMA until end 2014. From 2010 until January 2015, he was a Managing Director, and later Senior Advisor, at Lazard. He was previously Director-General of The Takeover Panel from December 2007, on secondment from Lexicon Partners, where he was Vice Chairman. Prior to joining Lexicon Partners in 2005, he was Co-Head of the Global Financial Institutions Group and Head of German Investment Banking at Citigroup Global Capital Markets, which acquired the investment banking business of Schroders in 2000. He joined Schroders in 1985 after having qualified as a solicitor with Clifford Chance in 1984.
Managing Partner, McKinsey & Company UK & Ireland
Vivian Hunt is the Managing Partner of McKinsey & Company's United Kingdom and Ireland offices and leads a team of over 1,100 people representing over 50 nationalities. She previously led the firm's Pharmaceuticals & Medical Products practice in Europe, the Middle East and Africa and continues to advise leading companies on a broad range of topics as well as providing strategic advice to leading British firms in the private, public and social sectors. Vivian is a leader within the firm on leadership and diversity and was recently identified by the Financial Times as one of the 30 most influential people in the City of London.
Partner, Corporate at Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz
Martin Lipton, a founding partner of Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz, specializes in advising major corporations on mergers and acquisitions and matters affecting corporate policy and strategy. Lipton is a Trustee of New York University (Chairman 1998-2015), a Trustee of the New York University School of Law (Chairman 1988-1998), an emeritus member of the Council of the American Law Institute, a member of the Board of Advisors of the Institute of Judicial Administration and an Honorary Chair of The American College of Governance Counsel. Lipton is a member of the Executive Committee of the Partnership for New York City and served as its Co-Chair (2004-2006). Lipton has a B.S. in Economics from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and an LL.B. from the New York University School of Law. He is a member of the American Academy of Arts & Sciences, a member of the International Advisory Council of Guanghua School of Management of Peking University, and a Chevalier de la Légion d'Honneur.
Richard Meredith is a partner at Brunswick Group, and head of the global corporate crisis group. He works with a range of international clients on reputational risk and mitigation, as well as on broader reputation programmes. Richard was formerly Director of Communications within the UK national security community, responsible for the intelligence services. Prior to joining Brunswick he had a 28 year career in the British Foreign Service, including assignments in Germany, the US, Iraq and Africa. He led the cross-Whitehall task forces on financial crime and on Counter Terrorism finance, and headed Middle East, African and Latin American policy and operations. During his career, he was also seconded to the Cabinet office and HM Treasury.
General Counsel, Diageo
Siobhán Moriarty is a lawyer, a graduate of University College Dublin and is admitted as a solicitor in Ireland and in England & Wales. She was in private practice in Dublin and London, before joining Diageo’s in-house legal team in 1997. Siobhán has held a variety of roles in Diageo, including Corporate M&A Counsel, Regional Counsel Ireland and General Counsel Europe, before taking on responsibility for leadership of the global legal team as General Counsel in July 2013. She is also a member of the Executive Committee of Diageo plc and is the joint Executive Committee sponsor of Diageo’s diversity and inclusion agenda (which sets diversity goals across the business). Siobhán has previously served as a Diageo nominated non-executive director on East African Breweries Limited, one of the largest listed companies on the Nairobi Stock exchange.
Head of Sustainable Commodities, WWF
Beatrix Richards works for WWF as Head of Sustainable Commodities within the Corporate Stewardship team. She graduated as an environmental scientist, took a Masters in forest management from Aberdeen University, and then a diploma in tropical dendrology at the University of Costa Rica, San Jose.
She has had a long and varied career in nature conservation in different parts of the world, including years in the US and New Zealand, a year surveying and writing the management plan for a new reserve in Costa Rica (while being pelted with empty orange husks by the last remaining troop of capuchin monkeys in that valley), managing field programmes in central Africa, and a total of nearly four years working in Brussels - unlike others she came away a true Europhile!
Beatrix now manages a team of nine, focused on enabling legal and sustainable trade in natural commodities in the UK, a cause she is passionate about, given the need for a different type of business – one that values nature, thinks long-term, and innovates for the future.
Head of London Office, Elliott Associates
Since 2009, Gordon Singer has been the head of the London office of Elliott Associates, a hedge fund with approximately $28bln under management which was founded in 1977. As head of the London office, Gordon manages all of Elliott’s European equity and corporate and sovereign credit positions. Gordon has been a member of Elliott’s Management Committee since 2007 and is also one of five Equity Partners at Elliott. Additionally, Gordon is on Elliott’s Risk Committee. Prior to joining Elliott in 1998, Gordon worked at Lehman Brothers in the investment banking analyst program. Gordon graduated from Williams College and spent his junior year abroad at Exeter College at Oxford University.
Partner, Spencer Stuart
Mark Stroyan co-leads the Legal, Compliance and Regulatory Practice at Spencer Stuart, a leading executive search consulting firm. Mark has been a Director of Spencer Stuart’s worldwide board and has also led the firm’s UK and EMEA businesses. He specialised in banking and finance at a City law firm before joining Spencer Stuart in 1997. He has a wealth of experience in assisting businesses, both domestic and international, in identifying and recruiting the right people for senior executive, non-executive and in-house legal positions.
Tim has had a long career in tax starting with 10 years as an Inspector of Taxes. His most recent roles were as head of tax for Unilever Plc and then seven years as head of tax at Tesco Plc. These two roles came in a period of increasing public interest in the tax profile of large businesses. Since leaving Tesco in 2013, Tim has assisted the Office of Tax Simplification, contributing to the report on the competitiveness of the UK tax system, and HM Treasury regarding aspects of the BEPS project.
Dr Rob Wylie
Co-founder and Chairman, WHEB
Rob is the co-founder and Chairman of WHEB, a sustainability focused multi-asset class investment firm, and Chairman of Cambridge Agritech, a syndicate of private investors in UK innovative Agritech companies. Rob has focused on resource efficient investments for over 25 years. Rob is also Vice Chairman of the Investment Committee of the Sino-UK Fund, which has a joint GP relationship with China Equity Group and focuses on UK but China ready life science investments.
A chemist with an MA and PhD from Cambridge, Rob spent ten years in Shell’s agrochemical business before working in the 1980s with Rothschild’s Bioscience unit investigating environmental investment opportunities. He then joined KPMG where he worked on numerous M&A and privatisation transactions as well as on the development of environmental funds in Central and Eastern Europe.
Rob has been an active participant on numerous industry, UK government and university advisory boards.
Slaughter and May speakers
Partner, Slaughter and May
Nigel’s broad practice includes domestic and international corporate finance, mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures, IPOs, demergers, private acquisitions and disposals, private equity, public takeovers, issues of compliance and corporate governance, investigations and insolvency, restructurings, investigations and sports law.
Nigel is a consulting editor of the Oxford University Press' 'Annotated Companies Acts' and is on the Editorial Board of the 'Journal for Corporate and Commercial Law and Practice'. He is a Trustee of the British Museum and a Vice President of Save the Children UK.
Partner, Slaughter and May
Martin has a general corporate and corporate finance practice, with particular experience in public takeovers and mergers, private acquisitions and disposals, flotations and secondary share issues, demergers and general corporate advice. Recent work includes advising Shire on its acquisition of Baxalta and on its acquisition of Dyax, Darty on the offers from Fnac and Conforama, Dätwyler on its offer for Premier Farnell and 3i on the capital raising by 3i Infrastructure.
Partner, Slaughter and May
Sarah has wide experience in all aspects of major litigation and arbitration, handling complex and substantial commercial disputes of a varied nature and often involving multiple jurisdictions. She acts for major corporates and financial institutions as well as governmental bodies and international organisations.
Sarah is ranked as a leading individual for Litigation and Tax: Contentious in Chambers UK, 2016. She is recognised as a leading individual for Commercial Litigation and Tax Litigation and Investigations in The Legal 500, 2015. Sarah is ranked for Litigation in Chambers Europe, 2015. Sarah is a CEDR accredited mediator, and a Trustee and member of the Management Committee of the Royal Courts of Justice Legal Advice Bureau.
Partner, Slaughter and May
Anna has a broad competition practice, including advising on mergers, cartels and market investigations. She has dealt extensively with the EU Commission and the UK competition authorities, as well as other regulators around the world. Anna was named in Management Today’s "35 under 35" list of high-flying young business women and voted 'Lawyer of the Year - Under 40' in the Global Competition Review Awards 2015.
Partner, Slaughter and May
Sara is Head of our Tax practice. Sara advises a wide range of clients on all aspects of corporate taxation and corporate transactions including mergers and acquisitions, structured finance, securitisations and asset finance. Sara also has extensive experience of advising on disputes with HMRC which have been settled following negotiation or which have proceeded to litigation.
Sara is named as a leading individual for Corporate Tax in The Legal 500 2016 and in the 2016 editions of Chambers UK, Chambers Europe and Chambers Global. She is also listed in Who's Who Legal 2016, and in the latest editions of the London Super Lawyers Magazine and the ITR’s Tax Controversy Leaders Guide.
Partner, Slaughter and May
Robin is active in our corporate and asset management practice and undertakes a broad range of work for corporate, private equity and investment firm clients. This includes advising on capital raisings, cross-border and domestic acquisitions and disposals, public takeovers, joint ventures and investment products.
Partner, Slaughter and May
Rob is a partner in our IP/IT group and is Head of our Technology and Outsourcing practices. He is also one of the partners in our Data Protection and Privacy hub, and co-leads our cross-stream cyber advisory unit. Rob also has significant experience in handling the IP, technology and data protection aspects of mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures, and other major corporate transactions.
Partner, Slaughter and May
Richard is co-head of our Global Investigations group. He has a broad-ranging international commercial litigation, arbitration, and investigations practice. Areas of particular expertise include corporate crime and sanctions work, banking litigation, insurance and reinsurance disputes, and competition litigation. Richard represents clients in complex, high-value proceedings and has managed significant regulatory and criminal investigations often with parallel UK and US aspects. He spent three years working in our Hong Kong office advising on a range of commercial disputes throughout the South East Asia region.
Partner, Slaughter and May
Jeff undertakes a broad range of corporate and commercial work for both corporate and private equity clients, advising on acquisitions and disposals, joint ventures, mergers and public takeovers, flotations and equity capital markets and private equity investment. He is Head of our Private Equity group.
Jeff is one of Chambers' Top 100 for 2013. He is listed as a leading individual for 'Corporate/M&A: High-end Capability' and for 'Private Equity: Buyouts' in Chambers UK, 2016; for 'Corporate/M&A: High-end Capability' in Chambers Europe, 2015; and for Corporate/M&A in Chambers Global, 2015. He is also listed for 'Private equity: transactions' in The Legal 500, 2015
Sarah de Gay
General Counsel and Head of Compliance, Slaughter and May
After practising as a Corporate/M&A lawyer, Sarah established Slaughter and May’s Compliance department in 2008. She is the firm’s COLP (Compliance Officer for Legal Practice) and a member of its Risk Committee. Sarah was appointed as Slaughter and May’s first General Counsel in May 2015.
Sarah has had a significant influence on the modernisation of the regulation of the solicitors’ profession. She was a founding member of the City of London Law Society’s Professional Rules and Regulation Committee (which she chaired until September 2016) and a member of the SRA’s Standards Committee from its formation until 2012 (during which time the SRA wrote its first Handbook and introduced outcomes-focussed regulation).
Deputy Head of Compliance, Slaughter and May
Julia is the Deputy Head of Slaughter and May’s Compliance Department, advising the firm on a wide range of regulatory matters. Prior to joining the Compliance Department, Julia practised as a corporate lawyer and IT specialist. She continues to be an expert on data protection and privacy-related issues.
Julia was an active member of The Law Society’s influential Money Laundering Task Force for a number of years and, more recently, has been invited to join the City of London Law Society’s Professional Rules and Regulation Committee.