Our People


Our evolved approach and customer focus are exemplified in the Blackfinch team, with dedicated people working to meet customers’ needs.

  • RICHARD COOK

    CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER

    Richard has been Chief Executive Officer of Blackfinch since 2009. He has been involved in the structuring and management of investment assets for over 14 years. Richard conceptualised and launched the Blackfinch brand and has overseen the growth and expansion of the company within the UK retail market. Previously, Richard worked in senior banking roles within Merrill Lynch and the Bank of New York.

  • RICHARD SIMMONDS

    CHIEF INVESTMENT OFFICER

    Richard has 15 years’ senior experience in financial services spanning projects, corporate finance and fund management, with a specialism in asset-backed fund management. Prior to joining Blackfinch, Richard held roles at NatWest, FTSE and Credit Suisse in London and New York. Richard holds an Executive MBA, the Certificate in Discretionary Investment Management, and the Diploma in Financial Planning.

  • JERRY R. PRICE

    CHIEF DISTRIBUTION OFFICER

    Jerry joined Blackfinch in 2013 to focus on strategic account management. He brings over 25 years’ experience in the financial services industry, ranging from direct sales, and management training to managing nationwide networks of independent financial advisers. Jerry is well known for the depth of his knowledge and understanding of the challenges advisers face both at an individual and corporate level.

BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT

  • STEVE EDGINGTON DIPPFS

    DIRECTOR OF STRATEGIC ACCOUNTS

    Steve Edgington joined Blackfinch in 2017 as Head of Strategic Partnerships, becoming Sales Director in 2018 and then Director of Strategic Accounts in 2019. With a focus on strategy and training as part of business development, he brings nearly 30 years’ experience. Steve started his career as a life inspector for Scottish Life, before joining The Hartford as Key Accounts Director in 2008. Subsequently, he held senior positions with several large distributors. Most recently, Steve worked at Metlife for three years as strategic account lead.

    [email protected]

  • SARAH HENDY

    STRATEGIC PARTNERSHIPS MANAGER

    Sarah joined Blackfinch in 2014 as Key Accounts Manager, becoming Strategic Partnerships Manager in 2019. She brings over 30 years’ experience in the commercial and financial services sectors. Sarah started her career in banking before joining the public relations department at the UK’s leading flight simulator company. After a period overseas, Sarah then spent 12 years working in London in property and media before focusing her career on business and relationship development.

    E: [email protected]

    T: 07944 748 584

  • DOMINIQUE BUTTERS

    EXECUTIVE BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT MANAGER

    Dominique joined Blackfinch in October 2016, bringing over 27 years’ experience. Dominique’s career began at Lloyds Bank in 1989, working as an adviser for ten years before moving to Towry Law as an Adviser. She then spent five years at Clerical Medical specialising in Inheritance Tax planning and eight years at Octopus Investments. Dominique is well known and highly respected for her technical knowledge and openness in helping advisers work effectively with professional connections.

    E: [email protected]

    T: 07496 771 180

  • GORDON PUGH

    SENIOR BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT MANAGER

    Gordon joined Blackfinch in 2015. He started his career in 2001 as an analyst on the EIS team at Close Brothers. He moved to Octopus in 2005, distributing tax-efficient products. In 2008 he helped launch Stellar AM, involved with forestry, hotels, farming, and EIS funds and trading companies for IHT. He has also been involved with media sector investments since 1998, including films for UK television. Gordon holds the IMC, completed the first stage of the CFA and is a serial EIS investor.

  • ROBERT JONES

    SENIOR BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT MANAGER

    Robert joined Blackfinch in 2018, focused on managing relationships with intermediaries and professional advisers in northern areas of the UK. Robert has worked in financial services for 34 years, including for Investec, Barclays Wealth and most recently Triple Point. He brings an extensive network of contacts, having developed strong relationships with advisers in the north of England and Scotland.

    E: [email protected]

    T: 07917 400 584

  • ALASTAIR LEWIS

    SENIOR BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT MANAGER

    Alastair joined Blackfinch in 2019, bringing 20 years’ experience in financial services. His focus is adviser relationships in Scotland and Northern Ireland. Alastair’s work with advisers has centred on investments and tax-planning solutions. Previously he was a Business Development Manager for Octopus Investments, covering the same regions. Prior to that he spent over ten years at Skandia. Alastair holds a BA (Hons) in Business Studies from Robert Gordon University and the Diploma in Financial Planning.

    E:  [email protected]

    T: 07796 508 222

  • SARAH WAKEFIELD

    BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT MANAGER

    Sarah joined Blackfinch in 2018, responsible for managing relationships with intermediaries and advisers in southwest England. She brings over 20 years’ experience in financial services and extensive knowledge of Inheritance Tax (IHT) solutions. Sarah’s previous roles include Zurich Financial Services, St. James’s Place and Canada Life, throughout which she has specialised in IHT solutions and in building trusted relationships with advisers.

    E: [email protected]

    T: 07917 385 706

  • SEAN BURROWS

    BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT MANAGER

    Sean joined Blackfinch in 2019. He has over 30 years’ experience in financial services. His background covers advice, research, product management, compliance and technical management, with a specialism in tax-efficient investing. Sean previously worked on tax solutions at Kuber Ventures and as an Independent Account Manager. Prior to that he was an Offshore Specialist for AXA Wealth International and Head of Life at Winterthur. Having designed products and trusts Sean can deliver unique solutions for advisers.

    E: [email protected]

    T: 07960 030 235

  • HAYDN BORRELL

    BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT MANAGER

    Haydn joined Blackfinch in 2019. He has worked in financial services for 14 years. He was first an adviser to high net worth clients for over ten years, with roles at the Welbeck Group (part of the Openwork Network), Barclays Wealth, St James’s Place and Santander Wealth. Haydn then worked as a Business Development Manager for MetLife and an Investment Manager for Ingenious. He has an Economics degree from Northumbria University, and holds diplomas in Financial Planning and EIS.

    E: [email protected]

    T: 07960 030 320

  • MARTIN PERRETT

    BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT MANAGER

    Martin joined Blackfinch in 2019 and is responsible for relationships with advisers across Central and East England. He has over five years’ experience in tax-efficient investments having previously worked at TIME Investments. Martin holds a degree in Business Management from the University of Gloucestershire, and the Diploma in EIS from the Enterprise Investment Scheme Association. He is currently working toward the CII Diploma in Regulated Financial Planning.

    E: [email protected]

    T: 07990 066 584

  • DANIELLE TROW

    BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT MANAGER

    Danielle joined Blackfinch in 2017 following previous managerial roles in which she established her excellent customer service track record. Danielle began as an Internal Business Development Manager (IBDM) at Blackfinch, being promoted to Senior IBDM in 2018 and then Associate Business Development Manager in 2019. Danielle holds a degree in English & Publishing from Oxford Brookes University, and since joining Blackfinch has achieved the Level 3 Certificate in Financial Services from the Chartered Insurance Institute plus additional certificates in EIS, Business Relief and other relevant industry topics.

    E: [email protected]

    T: 07771 933 345

  • KATHRYN SARGENT

    BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT MANAGER

    Kathryn joined Blackfinch in 2019 bringing nearly ten years experience in financial services. Previously she held roles at Morgan Stanley covering investment management, client relationships and sales, with her final being a Vice President. Prior to that she worked at Eaton Partners. Kathryn holds an LLB Law Degree with honours from City University, London, is a qualified barrister and holds the Investment Management Certificate (CF 30).

    E: [email protected]

    T: 01452 717 996

  • ANNA CARTER

    INTERNAL BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT MANAGER TEAM LEADER

    Anna joined Blackfinch in 2018. She has over fifteen years’ experience in financial services. Anna held several roles at Endsleigh Insurance and prior to that worked at Countrywide Assured, Lloyds and Holloway Friendly. She holds numerous qualifications from the Chartered Insurance Institute, including the Financial Planning Certificate Level 1, and from the London Institute of Banking.

    E: [email protected]

    T: 01452 717 758

  • LEE FRANKLIN

    INTERNAL BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT MANAGER

    Lee joined Blackfinch in 2016, bringing extensive experience in business development. He has a broad background covering telecommunications, IT and utilities. Previously Lee held manager and consultant roles for organisations including BT. He has also created and run training and consultancy projects across the UK. Lee holds an HND in Business and Finance from the Swansea Institute of Higher Education.

    E: [email protected]

    T: 01452 717 987

  • REBECCA PRICE

    INTERNAL BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT MANAGER

    Rebecca joined Blackfinch in 2017, with over 20 years’ experience in business development and sales. Previously she worked in property in roles of increasing seniority, her final being Senior Sales Negotiator, a post she held for ten years. Prior to that she was a Manager in the hospitality industry. Rebecca studied Business and Marketing at Staffordshire University. She is currently studying for the EIS Diploma from Intelligent Partnership and the CF1 from the Chartered Insurance Institute.

    E: [email protected]

    T: 01452 717 789

  • NICK SHIP

    INTERNAL BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT MANAGER

    Nick joined Blackfinch in 2018, bringing ten years experience in financial services. He previously worked at the Cabot Credit Management Group, leading teams in roles covering business development and customer operations. Nick holds a degree in Marketing and Strategic Business Management from Gloucestershire University.

    E: [email protected]

    T: 01452 717 585

  • GARETH POWELL

    INTERNAL BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT MANAGER

    Gareth joined Blackfinch in 2018 bringing extensive experience, having worked in banking and insurance for the last twelve years. His previous roles include managerial and business development posts at Lloyds Banking Group, Nationwide Building Society and Endsleigh Insurance. With a focus on business development, Gareth has supported companies globally including in the US.

    E: [email protected]

    T: 01452 717 968

  • NICOLE MEZZONE

    INTERNAL BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT MANAGER

    Nicole joined Blackfinch in 2019. She brings relationship and account management experience within financial services. Her previous role was at Attivo Financial Planning, working closely with retiring IFAs and integrating their clients onto the Attivo platform. Prior to that she was an Account Manager at UCAS Media. Nicole holds a degree in Economics and Social Studies from Cardiff University, and is currently studying for her R01 qualification in Financial Planning.

    E: [email protected]

    T: 01452 717 997

  • JAMES KERTON

    INTERNAL BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT MANAGER

    James joined Blackfinch in 2019, bringing nearly a decade’s experience in financial services. His previous role was as a Mortgage and Protection Consultant with Countrywide Mortgage Services. Previously he worked for Halifax Bank in several retail banking roles. James holds the CeMAP certificate from the London Institute of Banking and Finance.

    E: [email protected]

    T: 01452 717 978

MARKETING

  • EMMA HARRISON

    MARKETING TEAM LEADER

    Emma joined Blackfinch in 2018 as a Marketing Assistant, was promoted to Marketing Coordinator, and then progressed to Marketing Team Leader. Working as Blackfinch’s in house graphic designer, she produces all brand collateral and documentation, whilst also working on digital marketing and video. Emma works closely with Blackfinch’s strategic partners to create exciting content and updates about the business.

    [email protected]

  • EVE COUGHLAN

    MARKETING ASSISTANT

    Eve joined Blackfinch in 2018. She holds a first class bachelor of honours degree in Marketing from Liverpool John Moores University. Eve was a member of its marketing society and helped coordinate university events in the city. Eve has a marketing specialism in consumer behaviour, with her final year dissertation focused on the subject.

    [email protected]

  • ELLY HOLLIDAY

    MARKETING CONTENT ASSISTANT

    Elly joined Blackfinch in 2019, and provides support on content marketing. She brings experience in education and marketing, with a focus on social media and digital analytics. Elly previously worked as a Resourcing and Marketing Administrator within recruitment and as a teaching assistant and guide at Oxford Brookes University. Elly holds a BA in English Literature from Swansea University.

    [email protected]

  • SHARON MAKIN

    PR CONSULTANT

    Sharon joined Blackfinch in 2018. She has nearly 20 years’ experience in media relations and PR, covering the financial, TV and digital sectors. Previous clients include Santander, Octopus, Shed Media, Big White Wall and Troo.ai. As a consultant for financial and TV clients she has managed media relations and led campaigns. She has also headed communications at digital start-ups, helping them advance to industry recognition and global growth.

    [email protected]

investment management

  • DR REUBEN WILCOCK

    VENTURES DIRECTOR

    Reuben joined Blackfinch in 2019, a multi-award-winning entrepreneur with 15 years’ experience founding and growing technology start-ups. His smart home energy spinout, Joulo, won a British Gas Connected Homes award and was acquired by Quby. He also co-founded the startup Bar Analytics. Reuben was a leading figure in entrepreneurship at the University of Southampton, founding the accelerator Future Worlds, and mentoring over 200 entrepreneurs and 50 companies. Reuben has a first-class honours degree in Electronics, a PhD in integrated circuit design and is an inventor on five patents.

  • GUY LAVARACK

    INVESTMENT DIRECTOR

    Guy brings in-depth knowledge of corporate finance gained through a number of structured finance (debt and equity investment) roles with Lloyds Banking Group. Other roles prior to Blackfinch include Sales and Marketing and Divisional Statutory Company Director for a FTSE listed outsourced services provider, and the Wind Prospect Group, where he led the project financing/sale of renewable energy assets. Guy has a masters degree from Cambridge University and is a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society.

  • DAVID HIGSON

    INVESTMENT DIRECTOR

    David is responsible for the management of the property lending team, which forms part of Blackfinch Investments. His previous role was as Manager in the Transaction Services team at PwC London, where he performed financial due diligence on deals across a range of sectors. David holds a degree in Economics from the University of York, is an ICAEW-qualified chartered accountant and is studying for the Investment Management Certificate.

  • STEFAN AGOPSOWICZ

    INVESTMENT DIRECTOR

    Stefan has been with Blackfinch since 2009 and is involved in the analysis and valuation of potential new investment opportunities for the company’s portfolios. He holds a current Statement of Professional Standing issued by CFA Society United Kingdom, having passed Level 1 of the CFA exam and achieved the CFA Level 4 Investment Management Certificate, and is a member of the CFA Institute.

  • STUART TYLER-LLOYD

    SENIOR INVESTMENT MANAGER

    Stuart joined Blackfinch in 2018. He brings over 20 years’ experience in investment management, focused on institutional investment, and has been responsible for multi-billion pound portfolios. Stuart is an Associate of the Society of Investment Professionals, a member of the CFA Institute, and a member of the Chartered Insurance Institute.

  • ALEX SUMNER

    PORTFOLIO MANAGER

    Alex co-runs the Blackfinch Wealth MPS. He brings nine years’ investment management experience, with a strong track record in managing private client portfolios and working closely with financial advisers. Alex holds the certificate in Private Client Investment Advice and Management as well as the Investment Advice Diploma. He is a chartered fellow of the Chartered Institute for Securities & Investment and has been recognised as an industry high flier, featuring in Citywire’s ‘Top 30 under 30’ twice.

  • GARETH DEACON

    PORTFOLIO MANAGER

    Gareth co-runs the Blackfinch Wealth MPS. Gareth has 12 years’ experience in investment management, with expertise in the construction of mainstream investment products for clients and intermediaries. He holds the Diploma in Investment Compliance as well as certificates in Bond & Fixed Interest Markets and in Private Client Investment Advice and Management. He is a chartered fellow of the Chartered Institute for Securities & Investment and has achieved Chartered Wealth Manager status.

  • PATRICK HAYET-PATINO

    TECHNICAL MANAGER

    Patrick joined Blackfinch in 2018. He brings deep knowledge of investment processes and product structures. Previously he worked for 12 years at St James’s Place Wealth Management (SJP) as an Administration Manager. At SJP he continuously refined and improved processes, with control of a £60m+ per month payment file. Patrick is a part-qualified accountant through the Association of Chartered Qualified Accountants.

  • JOLYON RIDGWELL

    INVESTMENT MANAGER

    Jolyon joined Blackfinch in 2018, responsible for acquisitions for renewable energy generation projects. Jolyon’s experience includes work in the renewables sector for a green utility. Prior to that he worked for five years at a sustainability management consultancy. Before specialising in renewables, Jolyon worked in an equity sales and management consultancy. He has an MBA from Cambridge.

  • JOHN HARTIGAN

    INVESTMENT MANAGER

    John joined Blackfinch in 2018, responsible for placing and managing property loans. He brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the property team. Previously he worked for eight years at Royal Bank of Scotland and more recently at ThinCats. John is a chartered accountant who trained with PwC and led commercial refinance for Deloitte in the Midlands.

  • PABLO FERNANDEZ

    INVESTMENT MANAGER

    Pablo joined Blackfinch in 2018, a private equity specialist with over 15 years’ experience. He has held senior positions in private banking, wealth management and asset management as well as private equity. These include a variety of investment management roles at Morgan Stanley, including Senior Associate and Caixabank as Senior Manager. His background covers strategy, project management, marketing and innovation. Pablo holds a BA in Business Administration with a major in Finance from Complutense Madrid, an MA in Marketing from Esade and an Executive MBA from IE. Pablo is fluent in Spanish, English and Italian.

  • VAN HOANG

    ASSISTANT INVESTMENT MANAGER

    Van joined Blackfinch in 2018, working across its range of Inheritance Tax solutions. Previously she was a Lecturer in Finance and Economics at Portsmouth University. Van also brings ten years’ experience as an investor in emerging markets. Van is a member of the CFA institute and a CFA charterholder. She also holds an MBA degree.

  • DAN APPLEBY

    ASSISTANT INVESTMENT MANAGER

    Dan joined Blackfinch in 2018, involved in the valuation and management of the Adapt IHT AIM portfolios. Previously he was a Senior Analyst at Fidelity, working in fair value markets. Prior to that, Dan worked as an engineer at Intel. Dan holds a PhD based around mathematical modelling and experimentation. He is also a CFA Level III candidate, having passed Level II.

  • NICOLA MAYES

    ASSISTANT INVESTMENT MANAGER

    Nicola joined the Blackfinch property team in 2018, bringing experience in negotiation and analysis. Previously she worked at a mid-market private equity and investment banking firm. She then moved on to the BP Commercial Graduate scheme, where she was promoted into the BP investment management team. Nicola holds a degree in Business Management & Economics from Aston University.

  • HANNAH FRITH

    INVESTMENT ANALYST

    Hannah joined Blackfinch in 2018, bringing cross-sector experience. Previously she was a Research Analyst for Armstrong Wolfe and an Investment Administrator for KW Wealth, (formerly European Wealth). Prior to that she was a Meteorologist for the Met Office, and has worked overseas on military aviation forecasting. Hannah holds a degree in Geography from the University of St Andrews and an NVQ Level 5 in Meterological Forecasting.

  • MAXWELL ABBOTT

    INVESTMENT ANALYST

    Max joined Blackfinch in January 2019. He previously worked as a Senior Asset Management Analyst at Waterloo Housing and prior to that at DAC Beachcroft as a paralegal/fee earner. Max holds a BA (Hons) Graduate Diploma in Law and was called to the Bar of England and Wales in 2014. He is currently completing an MSc in Real Estate management, and working toward RICS Chartered Status.

  • KATIE WILLIS

    INVESTMENT ANALYST

    Katie joined Blackfinch in 2018, working within Client Resources before becoming part of the Blackfinch Property team. Katie assists the team in appraising deals plus working on marketing and business planning. She previously worked within insurance services at Capita where she managed data analytics around insurance risk and obtained a Certificate in Insurance. Katie is now in her second year of studying for a degree in Law from the Open University.

  • HASSAAN MEHMOOD

    VENTURES ANALYST

    Hassaan joined Blackfinch in 2019, bringing financial services experience. Previously he was an Investment Analyst at M&G Investments where he worked on its Small Cap fund and in its asset-backed securities team. He was also an Associate at mobile network Three and as an undergraduate gained experience in business and finance at a local level. Hassaan has a degree in Economics and Management from Aston Business School. He was Vice President of the Economics Society, Finance Director of the Islamic Society and elected representative for his course.

  • WINSTON MATHEW

    VENTURES ANALYST

    Winston joined Blackfinch in 2018. His previous experience includes a place on the junior proprietary trader programme at Samuel and Co.; as a Mechanical Engineer intern on the integrated stations programme at Transport for London, and as a Manufacturing Engineer intern at Jaguar Land Rover. Winston holds a master’s degree in Mechanical Engineering from Imperial College London.

     

  • COREY PRICE

    VENTURES INTERN

  • TERRY BACK

    ASSET SPECIALIST

  • ANDREW TROUGHTON

    ASSET SPECIALIST

    Andrew is a Chartered Surveyor with over 16 years’ experience in the residential and agricultural markets, working predominantly on valuations, tenancy work, compensation claims, planning and development. Andrew is also owner and manager of Carver Knowles, a successful and established chartered surveying business.

  • IAN BROWN

    ASSET ADVISER

  • PAUL CHIVERS

    INDEPENDENT INVESTMENT COMMITTEE - ASSET SPECIALIST

    Paul has over 25 years’ experience in the energy and commodity sectors, working in senior-executive positions for various international banks and trading houses. These include Mercuria Energy Trading S.A., BNP Paribas, Deutsche Bank and Credit Agricole Indosuez. Paul has also worked on government utility privatisations in the electricity and gas sectors, and on upstream oil and gas financing and renewable energy. Paul holds a B.Eng (hons) in Electrical and Electronic Engineering from the University of Liverpool.

product accounting

  • CHRIS OSIPIUK

    SENIOR FUND ACCOUNTANT

    Chris joined Blackfinch in 2018 with a track record in accounting within financial services. Previously he worked for two years as a Financial Accountant for renewable energy company Ecotricity. Prior to that he worked for three years as a Senior Auditor at Mazars UK. Chris is an ACA-qualified chartered accountant and holds a degree in French & Linguistic Studies from the University of Southampton.

  • SONYA NOBES

    ASSISTANT FUND ACCOUNTANT

    Sonya joined Blackfinch in 2018 with a broad background and experience across sectors. Previously she worked in the finance department of a green energy company. Prior to that held finance-based roles covering manufacturing, residential lettings, bankruptcy and tour operations. Sonya holds a bachelor’s degree in Occupational Therapy and is completing studies with the Association of Accounting Technicians.

  • KATIE THOMSON

    ASSISTANT FUND ACCOUNTANT

    Katie joined Blackfinch in 2019 with broad experience in accounting. Previously she worked for five years as a Junior Accountant at a practice in the Southwest, covering accounts preparations, corporation tax, VAT returns, self-assessment, management accounts and financial forecasts for new businesses. Katie holds the Professional Diploma in Accounting (Level 4) from the Association of Accounting Technicians and is continuing her professional studies to become a chartered accountant.

client resources

  • PAULA WAKEFIELD

    CLIENT OPERATIONS MANAGER

    Paula joined Blackfinch in 2019 with nearly 20 years’ experience in financial services. Previously she worked at Endsleigh Insurance as a Team Manager, leading four teams in the B2B area. She has also worked at Eagle Star/Zurich and Capita. Paula holds the CII certificate in Insurance from the Chartered Insurance Institute, along with prior Cert FPS modules. She also holds an NVQ Level 3 in Customer Service.

  • ELOISE JACKSON

    CLIENT RESOURCES SUPERVISOR

    Eloise joined Blackfinch in 2016 with a track record in client service. Previously she worked for European Wealth Group on its AIM portfolios. Prior to that she gained experience within the pensions sector, focused on pension claims. Eloise has completed the CF1 certificate in financial services from the Chartered Insurance institute and the ICA International Advanced Certificate in Money Laundering.

     

     

  • JADE MARSHALL

    CLIENT RESOURCES ADMINISTRATOR

    Jade joined Blackfinch in 2018, with nearly ten years’ experience in financial services, focused on customer services and telephony. Previously she worked for Lloyds Bank as a Mortgage Consultant, with her final role being a Mortgage and Protection Adviser. Jade holds the certificate in Mortgage Advice and Practice from the London Institute of Banking & Finance.

  • ALICE BOLLEN

    CLIENT RESOURCES ADMINISTRATOR

    Alice joined Blackfinch in 2017, bringing experience in client services and administration from the public sector and caring professions. Previously she was an Administration Officer and Receptionist for the NHS Community Dental Service, working on specialised cases to meet patient needs. Alice holds a bachelor’s degree in Geography from the University of the West of England.

  • LEWIS JONES

    CLIENT SUPPORT ASSISTANT

    Lewis joined blackfinch in 2018, bringing client service experience in financial products. Previously he worked as a Customer Service Consultant at Ageas Insurance within the AgeUK department of its customer contact centre, liaising with callers on queries around home and vehicle insurance. Lewis holds a bachelor’s degree in Geography from the University of Portsmouth.

  • LAURA MARTIN

    RECEPTIONIST

    Laura joined Blackfinch in 2019 with a background in financial services and customer-focused roles. Previously she worked for five years at Barclays holding two posts centred on Essential Banker and Essential Operations. Prior to that she worked in the hospitality industry. Laura holds a National Vocational Qualification (NVQ) Level 2 in Financial and Customer Service and an NVQ Level 2 in Health and Social Care.

corporate & client accounts

  • CATHY CLEMENTS

    SENIOR FINANCIAL CONTROLLER

    Cathy joined Blackfinch in 2016, bringing nearly 20 years’ experience. She started her career in private practice, qualifying as a chartered accountant. She then worked for 13 years as a Group Financial Accountant for a company specialising in corporate property investments. Her experience takes in management accounts, consolidated group financial statements and statutory accounts, corporation tax computations and treasury functions.

  • JAMES COWLES

    MANAGEMENT ACCOUNTANT

    James joined Blackfinch in 2018, with over fifteen years accountancy experience in financial services. He previously held roles at The Commonwealth Bank of Australia and The Royal Bank of Scotland in London. He also held the post of Senior Commercial Accountant at the Institute of Chartered Accountants of England and Wales. James is a qualified member of the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants.

  • RACHEL HARDING

    CORPORATE FINANCIAL ACCOUNTANT

    Rachel joined Blackfinch in 2017 with an accounting background. Previously she worked at Pemberstone as an Assistant Accountant and prior to that was a Management Accountant. Rachel holds the intermediate accounting qualification from the Association of Accounting Technicians.

  • BETH STONE

    CORPORATE FINANCIAL ACCOUNTANT

    Beth joined Blackfinch in 2017 with a background in accounting, focused on corporate finance, financial accounting and credit control. Previously she was a Finance Assistant in the charity sector, working for the Brandon Trust. Beth is currently studying for the professional level accounting qualification from the Association of Accounting Technicians.

  • MICHAEL WHEELER

    CLIENT ASSET ACCOUNTANT

    Michael joined Blackfinch in 2018, with over ten years’ financial services experience. He has specialised in trade settlement for equities, fixed income, commercial papers and certificates of deposit, along with back office processes for cash and derivatives. Previously he was a Settlements Manager at JP Morgan. Michael holds a Level 3 certificate in Investment Operations from the Chartered Institute for Securities and Investment.

operations

  • MARYANN NEUDEGG

    HR DIRECTOR

  • REBECCA COPSEY

    PROJECT MANAGER

    Rebecca joined Blackfinch in 2016 as an Operations Executive, then rising to Project Manager. She has nearly a decade’s experience in financial services. Previously she worked in the nuclear fuel industry before joining the foreign department at Hargreave Hale Stockbrokers. Rebecca holds the Level 6 Diploma in Investment Operations from the Chartered Institute of Securities and Investment and the Agile Project Management Certificate from APMG International.

  • FIONA BRUNT

    OPERATIONS ADMINISTRATOR

    Fiona joined Blackfinch in 2018. She previously worked at Equilaw as a Paralegal. Prior to that she worked in financial administration within the pensions and life insurance sector. Fiona holds a degree in Money, Banking & Finance from the University of Birmingham, and has completed studies with the Institute of Chartered Secretaries and Administrators.

  • ROB STAINSBY

    COMPLIANCE OFFICER

    Rob joined Blackfinch in 2018 with nearly 30 years’ experience in financial services, focused on compliance. Rob is responsible for compliance (CF10), CASS (CF10a) and is the Money Laundering Reporting Officer (CF11). Previously Rob worked with Aviva, Close Brothers and Embark Group in the provider sector. He also held a Compliance Director role at a large IFA in the southwest.

information technology

  • WILLIAM SIMMONDS

    CHIEF TECHNOLOGY OFFICER

    William joined Blackfinch in 2018, a technology professional and business leader with nearly 20 years’ experience and a track record of successful projects. He has worked across financial services, aviation, e-commerce, energy and motorsports, including as a Consultant or Architect for Easy Jet, Compare the Market and ASOS. Having worked with cloud technologies since 2012, he specialises in highly scalable cloud-based systems and architecture.

  • LEE FELLOWES

    SOFTWARE ENGINEER

  • CALLUM MCDOWIE

    IT SUPPORT

    Callum joined Blackfinch in 2015 as an Apprentice, and has since become an integral part of the team. He helps to ensure the running of IT systems, also supporting teams across businesses with their individual requirements. Previously Callum was based in Tahoa working on IT for a wristband business.

  • ETHAN WOOD

    IT SUPPORT

    Ethan joined Blackfinch in 2018 as an Apprentice with a strong interest in IT and much of his knowledge self-taught. He is focused on the development and management of IT systems, working with teams and businesses throughout the group. Previously he gained experience in retail with a role at Curry’s PC World.

  • ANDREW MEALIN

    SENIOR SOFTWARE ENGINEER

    Andrew joined Blackfinch in 2018 with nearly 25 years’ experience in IT and accounting. He has worked as a Freelance Software Development Engineer and Team Leader contracting with companies including HJ Heinz, Shell and Texaco. His accounting experience includes roles at Deloitte & Touche as an Auditor and a Data Analyst within Fraud Investigation. Andrew holds a degree in Commerce with Business Information Systems.

  • SHARIF ALVIS

    PRINCIPAL SOFTWARE ARCHITECT

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